ZURICH (Reuters) - Novartis is teaming up with scientific research centre the Broad Institute to catalogue the genetic and molecular profiles of nearly 1,000 cancer cell lines, a move that could pave the way for more targeted treatment for cancer patients.
Drugmakers are increasingly trying to come up with therapies that are more tailored for individual patients, especially in areas such as oncology, as they seek to bring more effective medicines with fewer side effects to the market.
Results of the collaboration, which will be in the public domain, may also help to improve the design of cancer trials and boost cancer research, Novartis, the world's second-largest maker of cancer drugs, said on Wednesday.
"Without access to a systemically collected set of molecular data, researchers can't match experiments from cell lines with patient tumors when new medicines become available," William Sellers, global head of oncology at the Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research said.
The cell lines were bought from commercial vendors in the United States, Europe, Japan and Korea, Novartis said, adding they include subtypes of both common and rare forms of cancer.
(Reporting by Katie Reid; Editing by Erica Billingham)