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Hooper Holmes (NYSE Amex:HH) has been selected as the biological sample collection lead for the largest government study of tobacco use ever conducted in the United States.
The study is a landmark collaboration between the National Institutes of Health and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. It is the first large-scale project on tobacco regulatory research since Congress granted FDA the authority to regulate tobacco products in the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act of 2009. Scientific experts at NIH's National Institute on Drug Abuse and the FDA's Center for Tobacco Products will coordinate the effort.
The study is properly known as the Tobacco Control Act National Longitudinal Study of Tobacco Users. Westat, in Rockville, MD., was awarded the research contract by the National Institute on Drug Abuse in a competitive solicitation process and has designated Hooper Holmes as the biological sample collection lead.
Over five years, investigators will follow more than 40,000 users of tobacco products nationwide and those at risk for tobacco use ages 12 and older. Participants will be interviewed annually and biological samples will be collected by Hooper Holmes.
“This five year study draws upon several of our strengths, including our national network of local health professionals and Heritage Labs’ kit manufacturing,” said Ransom J. Parker, President and CEO of Hooper Holmes. “Hooper Holmes is uniquely equipped to support longitudinal research studies and we are proud to have been selected as a partner in the Westat consortium.”
Hooper Holmes will collect buccal cell, urine and blood samples from participants and provide collection kits. Buccal cell samples are samples taken by swabbing the cheek inside the mouth. Collection kits will be manufactured at Hooper Holmes’ Heritage Labs division based in Olathe, KS.
Hooper Holmes will select and train phlebotomists from the Company’s national network of 9,000 local health professionals to collect samples following study protocols.