Salivary gland tumors are rare neoplasms with approximately 3,300 new cases per year in the US. While surgery is the main modality of treatment for these tumors, advanced unresectable primary, recurrent and metastatic tumors are generally fatal. It is important to note that the overall incidence for salivary gland malignancies mimics those of chronic myelocytic leukemias (CML), yet federal and private research enterprises for CML far exceed those for the salivary gland tumors. As a result, there have been relatively few investigators working in the field and a critical mass of research tools for investigators to engage in this type of research has not been established. In October 2006, NCI and NIDCR convened the first workshop on the ?Biology and Treatment of Malignant Salivary Gland Tumors.? It was concluded that this field is suffering from lack of progress in all aspects, from basic biology to therapy and patient management. More importantly, the workshop revealed that there is a paucity of research tools such as tissue specimens, cell lines, and animal models that are instrumental in promoting the basic and translational research in the field. Furthermore, a centralized effort to catalogue and collect these resources that can be made available to the extramural community is lacking. In an effort to advance basic and translational research in this field and ultimately improve public health, NIDCR led the effort to support the establishment of a centralized biorepository at an academic institution with known expertise in head and neck and salivary gland tumor biology and pathology NIDCR identified Dr. Adel El-Naggar at MDACC, a nationally and internationally recognized expert in salivary gland tumor biology and pathology, to lead the centralized biorepository. Dr. El-Naggar coordinated the effort to establish a centralized biorepository at MDACC through a consortium of satellite centers that agreed to contribute biospecimens to the biorepository. He identified a core number of experts in salivary gland pathology and biology who could help identify and catalogue biospecimens linked to diagnostic, pathologic, treatment, and outcome data. Through this consortium, the biorepository stores and catalogues fresh frozen salivary gland tumor tissues and paraffin blocks (with matched serum, saliva, lymphocytes, if applicable), as well as associated clinical data. It is anticipated that access to information on biospecimens and associated clinical data will be facilitated through a web-based electronic interface that is searchable online.

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University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
United States
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