CHLA awarded grant to study immunotherapy resistance in neuroblastoma

October 18, 2016

A team of investigators at Children's Hospital Los Angeles has received a major, three-year grant from the V Foundation for Cancer Research to study the effects of chemoimmunotherapy in children with neuroblastoma.

Neuroblastoma is the most common solid tumor occurring outside the brain in children. Less than 50 percent of patients with high-risk disease survive. Recent pilot data showed unprecedented results from using chemoimmunotherapy - a combination of chemotherapy and immunotherapy - on the more than half of treatment-resistant patients.

"These early results are very exciting and have changed the standard of care for these children," said Shahab Asgharzadeh, MD, director of the Basic and Translational Neuroblastoma program at CHLA's Children's Center for Cancer and Blood Diseases. "We would like to thank the V Foundation for their support of research into the mechanism of action of chemoimmunotherapy in childhood neuroblastoma so that, hopefully, we can discover how to make it effective for all children with this devastating disease."

This grant will fund research to discover how chemoimmunotherapy acts to destroy neuroblastoma. This information will provide the investigators with insights as to why some patients fail to respond. Armed with this knowledge, the researchers can develop strategies for modifying chemoimmunotherapy so that it effectively fights neuroblastoma in children that currently fail to respond to this treatment.

Other investigators on the team include: Robert Seeger, MD, director of the Cancer Research program, CHLA; Araz Marachelian, MD, medical director of New Approach to Neuroblastoma (NANT) consortium, CHLA ; and John Carptem, director of the Institute for Translational Genomics, Keck School of Medicine of USC.
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About Children's Hospital Los Angeles

Children's Hospital Los Angeles has been named the best children's hospital on the West Coast and among the top five in the nation for clinical excellence with its selection to the prestigious U.S. News & World Report Honor Roll. Children's Hospital is home to The Saban Research Institute, one of the largest and most productive pediatric research facilities in the United States. Children's Hospital is also one of America's premier teaching hospitals through its affiliation since 1932 with the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California.

For more information, visit CHLA.org. Follow us on our blog http://researchlablog.org/.

Children's Hospital Los Angeles

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