Welcome to the PHS Biomarker Lab

The Biomarker Lab, within the Cancer Prevention Program in the Public Health Sciences Division, supports epidemiological & clinical studies. We collaborate with researchers both internally at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and at other institutions such as Harvard, Tufts, University of Washington, and the National Institute on Aging. The large studies we have participated in include SELECT (Selenium and Vitamin E Cancer Prevention Study), PCPT (Prostate Cancer Prevention Trial), CHS (The Cardiovascular Health Study), and WHI (Women’s Health Initiative).     

We specialize in assays related to nutritional biochemistry and the discovery & validation of cancer risk biomarkers. We develop, validate, and perform a wide range of assays from lipids & vitamins to cytokines & hormones. The assay platforms we use include chromatography, chemistry analyzer, ELISA, Luminex, and etc. We implement rigorous quality control procedures from sample tracking to data review and management.  We participate and have had excellent records in the NIST fat-soluble vitamins/carotenoids in serum exercises and the DEQAS Vitamin D External Quality Assessment Scheme, which are national or international QA programs.

Our work with collaborators often starts at the proposal development stage of a project; we provide technical consultation, help choose the best lab methods, estimate costs, and etc. We also participate in the interpretation of assay results and preparation of manuscripts. 

The Director of the Biomarker Lab, Xiaoling Song, is a Biochemist and Molecular Biologist.  She earned a Ph.D. in Biochemistry & Molecular Biology from the UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas Texas.  She has had over 22 years of laboratory research experience, including 14 years leading research labs in both academic and industry settings. The scientific staff of the lab consists of 3 well-trained technicians.  They hold either a Master or Bachelor’s degree in biological/chemical disciplines, and their lab research experience ranges from 8 to over 23 years.