Progress in medical research takes time – and requires sustained funding. Support for kids’ cancer research is critically important. Donations from caring individuals make possible studies into safer and more effective treatments for kids and teens. Without donor generosity, the good ideas doctors and researchers have would never make it out of the lab and into new treatments for kids with cancer who desperately need them.

In a 24-month span, FIVE clinical trials will have opened to test new treatments for kids with cancer!

Last year, two important clinical trials opened to pediatric cancer patients:

Posterior fossa ependymoma tumors have poor outcomes when using standard therapies, especially for kids whose tumors recur. A trial created by Dr. Katie Dorris and Dr. Nick Foreman combines two proven drugs, one that targets a highly expressed protein in ependymoma and another that triggers cancer cell death.

Dr. Jean Mulcahy-Levy made a ground-breaking discovery several years ago that pediatric cancer cells with a specific mutation utilize a process called autophagy to overcome treatment. A trial at more than ten North American hospitals is investigating two combinations of medication that inhibit autophagy and make cancer cells more sensitive to treatment.

This year, three groundbreaking clinical trials will open for kids with cancer:

Dr. Nick Foreman and his team tested more than 200 known anti-cancer drugs on ependymoma cells in the lab and found that a chemotherapy drug called 5-FU was most successful when given alongside radiation and followed by a combination of 5-FU and another common drug. This treatment protocol will be available to kids with ependymoma in 2021. Click here to read more about this project.

MYC-driven medulloblastoma is a highly aggressive pediatric tumor with dismal outcomes and few treatment options. Dr. Rajeev Vibhakar and his team identified a mechanism for inducing cancer cell death and a combination of drugs that suppresses tumor growth. This novel treatment approach has been approved for clinical trial and will open this year.

Dr. Todd Hankinson’s craniopharyngioma research has resulted in two clinical trials testing a medication called tocilizumab. Tocilizumab blocks a protein his lab proved is present in high levels in craniopharyngioma tumors. A local trial is currently in progress and an international clinical trial that tests tocilizumab in combination with another medication will open at 10 sites across the U.S. and U.K. soon. Click here to read more about Dr. Hankinson’s research.

Your support makes life-saving kids’ cancer research possible and has given new, more effective treatments to kids who desperately need them right now.

There is still so much work to do to give every child diagnosed with cancer a chance at their future. Together, we can do it!

Will you help kids with cancer by making more clinical trials possible?