UPDATE 7/22: Videos of the presentations are now available below or as a playlist on the CCF YouTube channel.

The Children’s Cancer Foundation, Inc. hosted the 4th Annual CCF Research Symposium, “Solving Childhood Cancer through Collaboration” on Wednesday, June 5, 2019.

Launched in 2016 and the brainchild of CCF Scientific Advisory Board Chair Jeffrey Toretsky, M.D., of Georgetown Lombardi, the CCF Research Symposium is based on the belief that small local research dialogue will go a long way toward substantial research collaboration. Regional experts, advocates, and trainees share their research and continue to advance treatments of childhood cancer.

The one-day event was attended by over 80 participants and was generously hosted by Giant Food. CCF gratefully acknowledges the support of The Kahlert Foundation and all volunteers who contributed to an incredible day of learning.

Attendees heard from Keynote speaker Rosandra Kaplan, M.D. of the National Cancer Institute at the National Institutes of Health (NCI/NIH), who shared her groundbreaking research in the area of tumor microenvironmments and its implications for metastasis, or the spreading of cancer to other locations in the body.

The greatest opportunity for the “collaboration” was offered during the mid-day poster sessions, where participants interacted with more than 30 poster presenters from area research institutions. Included in this group were the 2018 CCF Research Awardees, who made themselves available to discuss their poster and the progress of their CCF-funded research.

Several researchers shared the progress that is happening on metabolic and immunotherapy treatments as well as advancements in brain tumors and rhabdomyosarcoma.

The speaker names below link to each of their presentations. Those listed without videos presented findings yet to be published.The videos are available to view altogether on our CCF YouTube Channel.

  • Christine Heske, M.D., NCI/NIH, “Clinical Update on new agents in trials” VIDEO
  • Grace McKay-Corkum, NCI/NIH, “Effects of icotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase inhibition with OT-82 in pediatric rhabdomyosarcoma” VIDEO
  • Nirali N. Shah, M.D., NCI/NIH, “Phase I CD22 CAR T-Cell Trial Updates” VIDEO
  • Yiouli Ktena, M.D. Johns Hopkins Medicine, “DNA methyltransferase 3a in donor T-cells as a regulator of Graft-Versus-Host Disease” VIDEO
  • Lindsay Kilburn, M.D., Children’s National, “Update on Targeted Therapy for Childhood Brain tumors” VIDEO
  • Antje Arnold, Ph.D., Johns Hopkins Medicine, “Inhibition of the mTOR and MAPK pathways suppresses growth, decreases vascularity and induces apoptosis or senescence in pediatric low grade glioma” VIDEO
  • Harpreet Kaur, Ph.D., Johns Hopkins Medicine, “Targeting the fatal pediatric brain tumor AT/RT and DIPG with the DNA binding agent quinacrine”
  • Marilyn Kouassi-Brou, Georgetown Lombardi Cancer Center, “Targeting PAX3-FOXO1 Oncoprotein: An Investigation of small molecule inhibitors for Rhabdomyosarcoma” VIDEO

The most emotional part of the day came from those directly impacted by pediatric cancer, who shared their journeys – Valerie Nguyen, who lost her younger sister Cecilia to cancer, and Vanessa Bishop, who has fought a brain tumor for over three years.

Their presentations can be viewed here:

CCF is grateful to these courageous and dedicated individuals that participated in the symposium and looks forward to following the incredible advancements that they make with their research, trials, treatments, and advocacy.

The 5th Annual CCF Research Symposium is tentatively scheduled for June 3, 2020.



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