University of California San Francisco
Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center

Pediatric Malignancies

The overall goals of the Pediatric Malignancies Program are (1) to understand the biology of pediatric malignancies and uncover links between normal development and cancer to identify therapeutic targets; and (2) to translate laboratory discoveries into clinical trials, and epidemiological and survivorship studies to improve clinical outcomes for children with cancer.
The Pediatric Malignancies Program conducts research under four themes:
  • Theme 1: Acute leukemia
  • Theme 2: Brain tumors
  • Theme 3: Neuroblastoma
  • Theme 4: Sarcoma and other pediatric solid tumors

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. These molecular studies can lead to a new understanding of the interactions of genetics and environment in cancer development and the late effects of treatment, thus improving the outcome for survivors of pediatric cancer. The Program’s efforts will also affect future advances through our excellent physician scientist training programs and our outreach and education of the public.