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UMd. to build $200M cancer treatment center

UMd. to build $200M cancer treatment center

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A private cancer treatment company is investing in a $200 million venture at the University of Maryland BioPark in West Baltimore, bringing 110 permanent jobs to the city.

The 100,000-square-foot Maryland Proton Treatment Center is expected to break ground in August. The center will treat about 2,000 patients each year and could open in 2014.

The project is a partnership between Advanced Particle Therapy LLC of Minden, Nev., University of Maryland School of Medicine physicians and the university’s Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum Cancer Center. It will offer the high-tech radiation treatment for cancer tumors.

A letter of intent for the project between UM administrators and Advanced Particle Therapy was unveiled Wednesday.

Proton therapy has been cited as a new high-tech alternative in cancer treatment that allows targeted doses of radiation to tumors, sparing healthy tissue with reduced side effects.

“This is the next-generation improvement in radiation oncology,” Dr. William F. Regine, interim chair of the Department of Diagnostic Radiology and Nuclear Medicine at UM, said in a statement.

UM officials said the proton treatment center will create 110 new biotech jobs at the life sciences research center. The BioPark is a 10-acre project that, when fully built, will hold 12 buildings and encompass 1.8 million square feet of wet lab and office space as well as parking.

Last month, the state’s Office of the Chief Medical Examiner opened a six-story building on the BioPark campus, with room to conduct up to 6,000 autopsies each year. The center is located at West Baltimore and Poppleton streets.

The proton therapy center will feature state-of-the-art cancer treatment equipment. So far, there are only nine other proton therapy centers in the U.S.  A similar center is being developed in San Diego by Advance Particle Therapy. ,

The center will create about 325 construction jobs.

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