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Q & A: Making sense of new research on possible link between phototherapy for newborn jaundice and cancer

May 23, 2016
Two new studies published in the journal Pediatrics analyze large datasets to see if there is a link between phototherapy (light therapy) for newborn jaundice and pediatric cancer. Lindsay Frazier, MD, a pediatric oncologist at Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s, and Anne Hansen, MD, MPH, medical director of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Boston Children’s Hospital, answer questions about the new research and its implications.

Evidence suggesting link between cancer and light therapy for newborn jaundice is inconclusive but warrants consideration

May 23, 2016
Two new studies raise enough questions about a possible link between childhood cancer and light therapy for newborn jaundice that clinicians should exercise caution in prescribing the treatment for infants whose jaundice is likely to resolve on its own.

Brave boy donates bone marrow to sister fighting leukemia

April 28, 2016
When his 3-year-old sister needed a stem cell transplant for relapsed leukemia, her 5-year-old brother was a perfect match. So he bravely had his stem cells surgically harvested to save his sister, WBZ-TV reports.

Young adult survivors of childhood cancer report overall health similar to middle-aged in general population

April 21, 2016
Do survivors of childhood cancer return to normal health as they grow up? According to new research published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, overall health-related quality of life in young adult survivors of childhood cancer resembles that of middle-aged adults.

Making a Difference

March 31, 2016
Venee Tubman, MD, has deep roots in Liberia, where her grandfather was the nation’s longest serving president. The pediatric hematologist/oncologist is bringing her expertise in sickle cell disease to the African country, where she has been instrumental in establishing newborn screening and follow-up care, Penn Medicine reports.

Amazing Allison: A young 'pioneer' and the Boston doctors who saved her

March 21, 2016
WBZ-TV anchor Lisa Hughes reports on a young brain tumor patient who became the first child on a targeted therapy trial for an adult skin cancer. Allison's tumors had stopped responding to treatment, but two months after starting the precision medicine, her tumors disappeared.

The Coalition for Pediatric Medical Research: Recommended Pediatric Priorities for the Cancer Moonshot Initiative

March 03, 2016
David A. Williams, MD, president of Dana-Farber/Boston Children's Cancer and Blood Disorders Center, and other members of the Coalition for Pediatric Medical Research met with the staff of Vice President Joseph Biden, leader of the federal government's cancer moonshot. The coalition members urged Biden's staff to ensure that pediatric cancer is represented on the moonshot and presented their recommendations.

Study explores how high-fat diet influences colon cancer

March 02, 2016
A study published in Nature reveals how a high-fat diet makes the cells of the intestinal lining more likely to become cancerous. The new study of mice suggests that a high-fat diet drives a population boom of intestinal stem cells and also generates a pool of other cells that behave like stem cells — that is, they can reproduce themselves indefinitely and differentiate into other cell types. These stem cells and "stem-like" cells are more likely to give rise to intestinal tumors.

Childhood leukemia patients from high-poverty areas more likely to suffer early relapse

February 23, 2016
Children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) who live in high-poverty areas are substantially more likely to suffer early relapse than other patients, despite having received the same treatment. The findings are significant because ALL that relapses early is more difficult to successfully treat.

Genetic Cause Identified in Rare Pediatric Brain Tumor

February 01, 2016
Diagnosis and treatment decisions for a recently recognized type of children’s brain tumor should be improved by the discovery of the genetic mechanism that causes it, say researchers who identified the unusual DNA abnormality in angiocentric gliomas.
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