The Research:

Genetic Predisposition

In a recent article in The Cancer Journal, researchers argued that there is a good chance genetic testing can identify genetic mutations that result in susceptibility to at least nine childhood cancers. An identifiable genetic susceptibility can add to an often incomplete family history in determining cancer risk. More research is needed to completely explore the accuracy of this genetic test.

A New Treatment

Researchers at St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital recently developed a new treatment method for children with Retinoblastoma, a cancer that develops in the cells of the retina. In infants, it is the third most common form of cancer. The new treatment is designed to save the lives and the vision of those affected and prevent recurrence by using a specific combination of cancer-fighting drugs.

Gene Expression

It could be as simple as turning on a gene. Researchers have found that the FOX01 gene is repressed in the cells of alveolar rhabdomyosarcoma, the most common soft tissue cancer in children. If the researchers could resuscitate expression of the gene, it could suppress all tumor activity, effectively eliminating this form of cancer.

The work continues...

These are just a few examples of the work scientists are doing. Research in pediatric cancer is going on every day throughout the world. With a little support, the next big breakthrough may be just around the bend.

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