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Geisinger and Indivumed Partner for Personalized Medicine Initiative

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SOURCE Geisinger Health System

This collaboration complements world-class cancer care with sophisticated scientific research focused on providing targeted therapies

DANVILLE, Pa. and HAMBURG, Germany, July 15, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Indivumed, a leading provider of services enabling individualized cancer therapy, and Geisinger Health System (Geisinger), one of the largest integrated health systems in the United States serving approximately 3 million people, today announced a partnership that will afford Geisinger patients access to advanced cancer treatment and clinical trials.

The two organizations announced partnership plans in May 2013 and reached a formal agreement earlier this week.

The collaboration allows Indivumed to partner with Geisinger to collect samples from consenting patients who are already undergoing a surgical tumor resection. Upon resection, a portion of the tissue, blood or urine remaining beyond what is required to make a clinical diagnosis will be banked at Geisinger through MyCode™, a repository that holds more than 45,000 patient samples. Another portion will be banked by Indivumed, which will analyze the tissue to be used in the development and, eventually, application of targeted therapies for cancer patients.

"We are pleased to be working on this next generation of cancer treatment with  Indivumed, a company recognized as a global leader in the field of biobanking and translational research," said Glenn D. Steele Jr. M.D., Ph.D., president and chief executive officer at Geisinger Health System. "This partnership will give Geisinger patients access to the most advanced cancer  therapeutics in the country, close to where they live and work."

"Developing targeted pharmaceutical therapies for cancer patients is at the core of our collaboration with Geisinger," said Hartmut Juhl, founder and chief executive officer of Indivumed. "Geisinger's advanced electronic health record and clinical data repository coupled with our ability to comprehensively analyze patients' individual cancers provides a unique opportunity to quickly translate new scientific discoveries into the practice of medicine."

Indivumed will integrate its unique biobanking standard at Geisinger Health System to jointly create a platform that offers extraordinary opportunities for clinical research focused on tumor biology.

Based in Hamburg, Germany, Indivumed is an integrated oncology company that leverages its biorepository of human tissue samples with its diagnostic laboratory to develop individual  cancer therapies. Indivumed maintains a biobank of tissues and annotated data from more than 20,000 patients – with about 1,500 new cases added per year–each collected under stringent specifications. The overall goal is understanding the biological difference between tumors and how patients respond to treatment to support the implementation of personalized therapy.

Research demonstrates that proteins change expression profiles significantly within minutes following surgical resection. Many of those proteins may serve as biomarkers for new drugs. For this reason, controlled and rapid tissue processing is necessary for understanding biological differences of or within patient tumors, especially when developing targeted therapies.

Indivumed follows highly standardized processes that enable the company to limit cold ischemia time – the time between removal of tissue from the body and the time it is preserved – to less than 10 minutes, guaranteeing tissue samples of the highest biological integrity.

"The goal of this partnership is to translate clinical research into specific knowledge about a cancer that is clinically relevant and will enhance patient care," Dr. Steele noted. "We continually strive to look for innovation opportunities to provide our patients with the most advanced care modern science has to offer."

About Indivumed
Indivumed has established the world's leading high-content tumor database and highest quality biobank to support the development of new cancer companion diagnostics and therapies. Aside from having implemented a highly standardized biospecimen collection process and a unique clinical infrastructure with clinical partners in Germany and the US, Indivumed offers a broad range of specialized research services to biopharmaceutical companies and academia and actively performs a cancer biomarker development program. With its subsidiary IndivuTest GmbH, Indivumed provides high-quality-tissue based tumor analysis to patients and started an initiative with oncologists in Germany and the US to improve personalized cancer therapy strategies in the clinical routine.

For more information, please visit www.indivumed.com

About Geisinger Health System
Geisinger Health System is an integrated health services organization widely recognized for its innovative use of the electronic health record, and the development of innovative care models such as ProvenHealth Navigator® and ProvenCare®. As one of the nation's largest rural health services organizations, Geisinger serves more than 2.6 million residents throughout 44 counties in central and northeast Pennsylvania. The physician-led system is comprised of more than 21,000 employees, including a 1,100-member multi-specialty group practice, eight hospital campuses, two research centers and a 467,000-member health plan, all of which leverage an estimated $7.4 billion positive impact on the Pennsylvania economy. The health system and the health plan have repeatedly garnered national accolades for integration, quality and service. In addition to fulfilling its patient care mission, Geisinger has a long-standing commitment to medical education, research and community service. For more information, visit www.geisinger.org, or follow the latest Geisinger news and more on Twitter and Facebook.

CONTACTS:
Patti Urosevich, 570-204-1848
Mike Ferlazzo, 570-214-7410
Swantje Niphut, +49 40 4133-8375

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