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Researchers to develop next generation immunotherapy for children with deadly solid tumors
Date:4/3/2013

Recently, research using adoptive T-cell immunotherapy in blood cancers have shown success, most notably in the case of a seven-year-old girl whose leukemia went into remission using altered T-cells and a disabled HIV virus. Now, two of the pediatric cancer scientists involved in the T-cell/HIV study will develop a new experimental cancer immunotherapy treatment option for children with high-risk solid tumors based on the same novel approach that uses a patient's own T-cells to attack tumor cells.

Researchers at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, the University of Pennsylvania, and the Primary Children's Medical Center of Salt Lake City received a $550,000 collaborative grant to test next generation T-cell immunotherapy strategies in children with neuroblastoma, a solid tumor with poor prognosis that is responsible for 15% of all childhood cancer deaths. The awardees were selected within a rigorous peer-review process through a new initiative called ACT FAST (Adoptive Cell Therapy For Adolescent/pediatric Solid Tumor), which is spearheaded by Solving Kids' Cancer. ACT FAST aims to fast-track promising research into a clinical trial within one year of the award through a collaborative team of researchers.

"Only a handful of cancer centers in the world have the capabilities and the infrastructure to implement adoptive cell therapy," said Scott Kennedy, the Executive Director of Solving Kids' Cancer. "Our goal in bringing together these researchers and institutions was to harness their collective power in bringing faster cures to kids with neuroblastoma."

The National Cancer Institute (NCI) and the Society for the Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC) provided strategic counsel and expert review of the grant award, which was jointly funded by Solving Kids' Cancer, the Pierce Phillips Charity, and the Catherine Elizabeth Blair Memorial Foundation.

The clinical trial will be the first to use transiently modified T-cells in childr
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Contact: Jenny Song
jenny@solvingkidscancer.org
212-588-6625
Solving Kids' Cancer
Source:Eurekalert

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