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CSHL announces collaboration to speed development of new cancer therapies

Short hairpin RNA collection applied to advanced mouse models aims to accelerate drug target validation

Cold Spring Harbor, NY — Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL) has announced a research collaboration with Pfizer Inc. to develop a next-generation human short hairpin RNA (shRNA) library which could be used to silence gene expression via the process of RNA interference (RNAi) and identify new therapeutic targets in cancer.

“CSHL is pleased to partner with Pfizer to create a shRNA technology platform that could speed the validation of drug targets and open doors to new therapeutic options in a range of cancers,” said CSHL President Bruce Stillman, Ph.D. The CSHL-Pfizer agreement will bring the Laboratory’s academic researchers together with Pfizer’s scientists in both the technology development and training environments.

“Pfizer is pleased to be involved in this partnership, which will marry cutting-edge shRNA technologies with our efforts in cancer genetics and complex tumor models toward the singular goal of identifying and validating novel targets for cancer therapeutics,” said Bob Abraham, Pfizer’s Oncology Chief Scientific Officer.

CSHL is the birthplace of the first-generation shRNA library developed by HHMI Investigator and CSHL Professor Greg Hannon. Dr. Hannon has pioneered the use of RNAi techniques to study mammalian genes, including development of comprehensive collections of synthetic shRNAs that can be used to specifically silence the expression of most human, mouse, and rat genes. These materials are available to the academic community.

Written by: Public Affairs | | 516-367-8455

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About Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory

Founded in 1890, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory has shaped contemporary biomedical research and education with programs in cancer, neuroscience, plant biology and quantitative biology. Home to eight Nobel Prize winners, the private, not-for-profit Laboratory employs 1,100 people including 600 scientists, students and technicians. The Meetings & Courses Program annually hosts more than 12,000 scientists. The Laboratory’s education arm also includes an academic publishing house, a graduate school and the DNA Learning Center with programs for middle and high school students and teachers. For more information, visit