The goal of the Pediatric Malignancies Program is to improve, the outcome for children with cancer through basic and clinical translational research. Pediatric cancers are unique in their morphology, tissues of origin, and behavior. They provide an opportunity to understand the link between normal development and the aberrant signaling networks of childhood malignancy; to discover through these genetic networks new therapeutic targets; and then integrate these into innovative clinical trials.
The main research themes of the Program focus particularly on the common childhood tumors, neuroblastoma, brain tumors, leukemias, and sarcomas; and translating our molecular and genomic studies into developmental therapeutics in these cancers (prioritizing PI3K, RAS and MAPK signaling as areas where we have strong collective expertise), and understanding the late effects and epidemiology of childhood cancer in order to improve survival and quality of life.
The Program has 18 members from six different departments. The Program is enhanced by close synergy with Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center Programs such as Hematopoietic Malignancies, Neurologic Oncology, Developmental Therapeutics, Cancer Control, and Tobacco Control, as well as many interactions with scientists in basic science programs, such as Cancer Genetics and Cancer, Immunity, and the Microenvironment, and with essential use of the Center Cores such as Clinical Research Support Office, Laboratory for Cell Analysis, Preclinical Therapeutics, and Genome Analysis.