Greenwood, S.C., continues to increase its role and competitiveness as an international provider of genetic services with the commitment of more than $5.4 million from the Greenwood Genetic Center (GGC) to expand and enhance molecular and metabolomic testing. This investment will bring new technologies and equipment, an expanded diagnostic test menu and enhanced efficiencies to the Center's Harold A. Taylor Diagnostic Laboratories in Greenwood.
In addition, future money allocated in the recently passed Greenwood County Capital Project Sales Tax Referendum will be used to run a new telecommunications network throughout the GGC campus that will allow for high speed data capabilities, further enhancing their diagnostic, research, educational and clinical capabilities.
"Current genetic testing practices require the newest molecular and metabolomic platforms. The methods involved require a high level of precision combined with state-of-the-art equipment, well-qualified personnel and bioinformatic solutions to manage the extremely large datasets that are produced on a daily basis. This investment lays new groundwork and allows us to further our commitment in the demanding and ever-changing world of clinical diagnostics," said Mike Friez, PhD, Director of the GGC's Diagnostic Laboratories.
According to Friez, the expansion will also allow for the hiring of additional laboratory technologists and scientists to develop and implement the new tests, as well as staff to enhance future marketing strategies.
Currently the Greenwood Genetic Center employs 170 people, including 36 MDs and PhDs, and provides over 27,000 laboratory tests annually.
"This investment is critical in maintaining our international leadership role in diagnostic genetic testing and will facilitate our ability to recruit academic and industry relationships that are critical to the economic development and growth of the Center and the surrounding Partnership Campus," said Steve Skinner, M.D., Director of the GGC. "Most importantly, this investment will ensure that the patients and families that we serve will have access to state-of-the-art diagnostic testing right here in Greenwood, S.C."
"I am excited to see the Greenwood Genetic Center continue to grow, and even more so, grow into areas of increased capabilities for fruitful partnerships and industry-related contract work," noted Heather Simmons Jones, chief executive officer of Greenwood Partnership Alliance, the public-private partnership tasked with enhancing the economic growth of Greenwood County. "The model of adding increased revenue while connecting with companies committed to cutting-edge treatment and clinical trial activities, only accentuates the great work being done on-site in Greenwood."