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  • Writer's pictureMartin Steel

A Customer Experience - Children's Cancer Therapy Development Institute

Helping to move scientific discoveries and technology forward, McKinley Scientific makes a difference beyond leasing, buying, selling or trading of equipment. When Charles Keller, a Pediatric Cancer Researcher at Children's Cancer Therapy Development Institute (cc-TDI), thought all hope was lost, a half-million dollar cell sorter machine became available at a fraction of the cost.

Keller Connected with McKinley Scientific

As a nonprofit freestanding research institution, cc-TDI’s funds are limited, relying primarily on grants and donations. Following a call to McKinley Scientific explaining their situation, Martin Steel, Senior Vice President & Director of Global Sales, kept his ears and eyes open for opportunities. McKinley Scientific is an asset management company providing access to new and used instrumentation to meet biotechnical or pharmaceutical laboratories’ needs around the world.


What Keller thought was the end of their communication ended up being the start of a hunt for equipment that could move their research forward. Finally stumbling upon a cell sorter for a quarter of the cost of a brand new unit, Steel made the call. What was thought to be completely out of reach was finally reasonable for cc-TDI’s small budget.

Cell Sorter to the Rescue

Now empowering a wide array of research and used weekly by every member of the team, this machine is helping to put their mission in motion -- translating scientific discovery into clinical trials by understanding and proving new disease-specific treatment options for children with cancer. One in every 5 children has one of these incurable cancers that even 40 years of ongoing research doesn’t address. cc-TDI is working to change that.

Dr Charles Keller


“[McKinley and Steel’s] personal kindness and advocacy to get us this instrument has been transformational. It’s our favorite instrument, and several projects a month are designed around it,” said Keller.


Specifically, the cell sorter has helped move forward several drugs based on papers featured in publications focused on development, natural medicine, and science signaling. In just a few short months since November 2018, there have been three discoveries in national clinical trials in children’s hospitals all across the U.S.

Researching Less Toxic Therapies for Kids with Cancer

Working in an industrial modern lab site (a paint factory remodeled by Nike as an off-site creative space) Kellers’ research, in particular, focuses on the development of more effective, less toxic therapies for childhood cancers. His special interest is advanced disease that has spread beyond the initial location of the cancer.


While not every endeavor has a start like cc-TDI, a compassionate team and established connections meant McKinley was able to locate the right product at the right price in a relatively short amount of time.


The staff at McKinley Scientific works hard to keep laboratories in more than 60 countries around the world up to date and running to the best of their ability within their very strict budgets. When you work with McKinley Scientific, the team is with you every step of the way, through creating a strategy, refurbishing and testing the equipment, shipping, and installing your equipment for an easy transition to your laboratory. McKinley offers creative solutions, connections to resources, and compassion and understanding.




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