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  • Arthur and Linda Gelb Center for Translational Research

    The Arthur and Linda Gelb Center for Translational Research provides a platform and support for investigators at Dana-Farber, collaborating institutions, and industry — to promote discoveries in the biology of genitourinary (GU) cancers, and to translate these findings into clinical benefit. The Gelb Center fosters collaboration across traditional boundaries by providing access to a wide array of high-quality and well-characterized human biospecimens and clinical data for the advancement of clinical and translational research.

    About the Gelb Center for Translational Research

    lab researcher  

    Our history

    The Gelb Center for Translational Research was founded by Arthur and Linda Gelb in 2000 to foster translational research in prostate cancer. In March of 2001, the Gelb Center began to consent patients for tissue, blood, clinical data, and future re-contact.

    Today, the Gelb Center maintains blood and tissue specimen repositories and a large clinical database. We provide these resources to help investigators make or confirm discoveries relevant to GU cancer research. To date, thousands of patients with prostate, kidney, and bladder cancer have contributed to specimen banking and clinical databases. The Gelb Center has an extensive history of providing resources to investigator-initiated and industry-initiated research projects that have resulted in publications in top scientific journals.

    The highest ethical standards

    The Gelb Center obtains and distributes de-identified clinical data and/or biospecimens with adherence to strict quality and ethical standards. The Gelb Center recognizes the ethical standards and ensures that samples are collected under the necessary guidelines set forth by the DFCI IRB and ethics committees, and follows HIPAA guidelines and Good Clinical Practices.


    Gelb Center Services

    lab technician  

    The Gelb Center provides top-level service to identify and fulfill an investigator's needs on an individual and customized basis. Custom protocols for prospective collections may also be developed per an investigator's specifications. Clinical data and biospecimens are available from patients with GU cancers such as prostate, kidney, and bladder cancers.

    Clinical data

    De-identified clinical data available in our Clinical Research Information System (CRIS) databases include:

    • Demographic data (age, race/ethnicity)
    • GU cancer-related treatment history
    • Scan results
    • PSA results (for prostate cancer only)
    • Survival
    • Cause of death

    Additional clinical data may be available per investigator's specifications.

    Blood specimens

    Blood specimen types include:

    • Serum
    • Plasma
    • gDNA
    • RNA

    Prospective collection may be feasible per your specific requirements.

    Tissue specimens

    Formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded (FFPE) tissues are currently available. Tissue microarrays (TMAs), frozen tissue and fresh tissue may be obtained per your specific requirements.


    The Gelb Center Team


    Chairman of the Gelb Center: Mark Pomerantz, MD
    Lab Manager: Mary Lee, PhD
    Clinical Research Manager: Carolyn Evan


    How to Request Gelb Center Services

    petri dish  

    The focus of Gelb Center services is to provide investigators with high quality and well-characterized biological specimens for utilization in basic science, translational research, biotechnology and pharmaceutical practices.

    Two steps to collaborating with the Gelb Center

    1. Please email us an Initial Request for clinical data and/or specimens per the instructions in the box below. Your Request will receive the careful, personalized attention of Gelb Center personnel. Within two days, we will determine whether your Request is feasible, and will contact you with our evaluation.
    2. If we can fulfill your Request, we will send you a formal Proposal Form, which asks for additional details about your needs. The User Committee will carefully evaluate the Proposal that you send.

    Emailing instructions for your Initial Request for services

    Per Step 1 above, please furnish the following information in an email to

    1. Your full name and title
    2. Your academic institution or company name
    3. Your work email (no personal emails such as Gmail or Yahoo)
    4. Your work phone number
    5. Your request details, including:
      1. A brief description of specimen type
      2. Amount needed
      3. Date needed
      4. Any other details relevant to your project

    Frequently Asked Questions about Gelb Center Services

    tissue sample slides  

    Q: Does the Gelb Center supply both normal tissue and tumor specimens?
    Yes, we supply normal tissue specimens to correlate with tumor specimens from the same subject when available.

    Q: Does the Gelb Center supply metastatic tumor specimens?
    No, metastatic tumor specimens are not currently available.

    Q: Does the Gelb Center supply blood specimens from healthy individuals?
    No, blood specimens from healthy individuals are not available at the Gelb Center.

    Q: Have the individuals from whom biospecimens are obtained provided consent for the distribution of the samples?
    Yes, all specimens are collected, processed and handled as per our clinical / specimen banking protocols that are approved by our IRB.

    Q: Where can I find a catalog or price list for biospecimens available from the Gelb Center?
    Individual requests are received from investigators and potential collaborators. As each request entails specific requirements, we are unable to provide a comprehensive pricing list or catalog. The Gelb Center assesses each request for investigator's needs and biospecimen availability and each request receives a personalized response from a Gelb Center professional that includes availability and pricing.

    Q: What is your Quality Assurance system and how do you guarantee biospecimen quality?
    Pathology and quality assessments are performed by our pathologists and staffs, and the Gelb Center guarantees that all biospecimens are accurately characterized.

    Q: Does the Gelb Center require a Material Transfer Agreement (MTA) or Data Use Agreement (DUA)?
    MTAs or DUAs are required for non-DF/HCC investigators. If a MTA/DUA is required, the Gelb Center will facilitate the process with Office of Research and Technology Ventures in an expedient manner.

    Q: Do you provide primary cell lines derived from human tissues?
    No, the Gelb Center currently does not supply primary cancer cell lines that are derived from human tissue.

    Do you have more questions for us at the Gelb Center? Contact us at

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  • Support Cancer Research

    • To learn more about the many ways you can support Dana-Farber’s research initiatives with a philanthropic gift, please contact Rebecca Freedman at 617-632-4215 or rebecca_freedman@
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