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Dana-Farber/Boston Children's launches first DIPG Brain Tumor Consortium

DPIG Consortium

Earlier this month, diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG) researchers from several pediatric hospitals around the country gathered in Boston to share their innovative ideas and kick off the first DIPG Clinical Consortium.

Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center will lead this effort in partnership with Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford, Seattle Children’s, Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, Texas Children’s Hospital, and the University of Florida. Each of these sites has experienced researchers with a major focus on improving outcomes of children with DIPG.

“The idea behind this consortium is to use extensive preclinical information from DIPG tumor cells and animal models to optimize clinical trial design, determine effective dosing and scheduling, and translate these in comprehensive clinical trials for children with DIPG.” says Katherine Warren, MD, clinical director for Pediatric Neuro-Oncology at Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s.

DIPG is highly aggressive and one of the most difficult-to-treat childhood tumors. It’s the second most common malignant brain tumor, as well as the leading cause of brain tumor death among children. Outcomes for these children have not changed in more than three decades. This consortium is dedicated to changing that by expanding preclinical studies and using this information to strengthen the scientific rationale and study design.

“We want to figure out what preclinical information we need to expand upon before we bring it to the clinic, so these kids have a chance,” says Warren. “We need to know which drugs are effective, if the drug reaches the tumor, and what dose is needed to get the anti-tumor effect. We want this information before going to clinical trial, so that when patients enroll in studies, they receive effective doses of active drugs.”