Protea & VCU in Molecular Imaging Research Partnership

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SAVANNAH, Ga., Sept. 18, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Protea Biosciences Group, Inc. ("Protea") announced today that it has entered into a Collaborative Research Agreement with Virginia Commonwealth University ("VCU") and its Center for Molecular Imaging. The research focuses on the combination of LAESI, Protea's ex vivo molecular imaging mass spectrometry technology platform, with VCU's in vivo molecular PET, SPECT and MRI/MRS imaging capabilities, in hopes of developing new methods to better elucidate the molecular basis of cancer, Alzheimer's and other human disease.

The announcement was made at the Sixth Annual World Molecular Imaging Congress, being held this week in Savannah, Georgia

"We are pleased to form this exciting research collaboration with VCU's Center for Molecular Imaging," stated Steve Turner, CEO. He added, "Under the leadership of Dr. Jamal Zweit, VCU has built a world class biomolecular imaging infrastructure and capability." He added, "It has been the dream of medical science to be able to obtain data on cellular changes at the molecular level, rapidly, and in tandem with existing imaging screening methods. This research initiative is directed at achieving this goal."

LAESI (short for Laser Ablation Electrospray Ionization) was developed by Protea to rapidly generate imaging profiles of the biomolecules present in cells and tissue sections. The LAESI DP-1000 allows the direct identification of biomolecules in living cells and bacterial colonies, with analysis completed in seconds to minutes. Thus, molecular changes that occur in cells over time can be identified and tracked.

Jamal Zweit, PhD., Director of the VCU Center for Molecular Imaging, stated, "We are excited to make this research collaboration with Protea. Our center has established state of the art technical capabilities, including the ability to design and synthesize radiolabeled compounds for PET and MRI Imaging. Our scientific team emphasizes multi-modality imaging, and our applications of imaging, biochemistry, physics and clinical medicine to advance molecular imaging make us uniquely-qualified to undertake this research initiative."

About Protea Biosciences Group, Inc.

Protea is a technology leader in the field of mass spectrometry ("mass spec") molecular imaging - the identification and localization of the molecular products of living cells, that is foundational science for all pharmaceutical, medical, and life science research.

Protea website:

About LAESI imaging:

About The Virginia Commonwealth University Center for Molecular Imaging

The Center for Molecular Imaging integrates molecular imaging and molecular medicine with systems biology approaches to understand disease complexity, promising to provide predictive, preventative and personalized medicine that will transform health care. The Center for Molecular Imaging at the VCU Medical Center is designed to foster multidisciplinary molecular imaging research using advanced imaging technologies that together provide real-time in-vivo information, complemented with ex-vivo data. The center's objective is to study biological systems and interactions at the molecular, cellular and tissue level in their intact environment. The center has a focus in cancer and neuroscience research.

VCU Center for Molecular Imaging website:

Forward-Looking Statements

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For more Information:
Protea Biosciences Group, Inc.,
955 Hartman Run Road, Morgantown, WV 26507 USA
Phone: 304.292.2226 Fax: 304.292.7101
Virginia Commonwealth University Center for Molecular Imaging
1101 E. Marshall Street, Sanger Hall, Room 8-022, PO Box 980031
Richmond, VA 23298-0031
Phone: 804-628-2783 Fax: 804-628-0223
IR Contact:
Jeff Ramson, ProActive Capital Group 646-863-6341

Protea and LAESI are registered Trademarks of Protea Biosciences Group, Inc.

Source:Protea Biosciences, Inc.