Wash. U. wins court ruling over blood and tissue samples
St. Louis, MO – Washington University has won a key court ruling in a four-year fight with a prominent researcher over blood and tissue samples donated for prostate cancer research.
A federal appeals court panel in St. Louis says biological materials donated to the university are the property of the institution - and not the donors or a researcher who helped collect them.
Doctor William Catalona tried to take the collection with him when he moved to Northwestern University. He called Thursday's decision a "a step backward in ethical human subjects research," and is considering an appeal.
The university says it is now free to use the human tissue, blood and DNA samples that have been in limbo since the property dispute erupted in 2003.
The biorepository is one of the world's largest for prostate cancer research.