Solving Kid's Cancer - The Podcasts

This Week in Pediatric Oncology

TWiPO #10 ~ Interview with Dr Robert Seeger

July 07, 2011

"This Week in Pediatric Oncology" podcast host Dr Tim Cripe interviewed Dr Robert Seeger from CHLA (Children's Hospital of Los Angeles) about his contributions to improvements in treating neuroblastoma as well as his vision for future advances.

 

Dr Seeger's career has been remarkable in that he began with an interest in immunotherapy and neuroblastoma as an intriguing model for this approach, and has consequently been involved in every major advance in treating neuroblastoma, including the pivotal 1984 discovery of the first-ever amplification of an oncogene for any cancer – MYCN and the 1985 demonstration that MCYN could be used to predict survival. Authoring over 180 publications, Dr Seeger has made a significant contribution to every step toward developing better therapies for neuroblastoma, including induction therapy, myeloablative therapy, immunotherapy with anti-GD2 antibody and cytokines, maintenance therapy with retinoids, and most recently, work in tumor microenvironment and developing reproducible biomarkers for detecting minimal residual disease. At the beginning of Dr Seeger’s career, survival for high-risk neuroblastoma was abysmal at about 5%, and now survival is about 45%. Dr Seeger has been a leader in the NANT consortium (New Approaches to Neuroblastoma Therapy) and involved in planning the early phase clinical trials conducted by this 15-member consortium.

When questioned about current challenges in his research, Dr Seeger mentioned the increased regulatory burdens associated with developing new treatments, and also discussed the need for preclinical (mouse) models that are predictive and well-validated. Dr Seeger believes that improvements can be made in functional imaging, including developing pharmacodynamic markers to detect impact of therapy on tumor.

Dr Seeger is Professor and Division Head for Basic and Translational Research at Children's Center for Cancer and Blood Diseases, Children's Hospital Los Angeles/USC School of Medicine in Los Angeles, CA. His research interests are neuroblastoma risk assessment by gene expression profiling at diagnosis; evaluating response to treatment by quantifying rare neuroblastoma cells in blood and bone marrow; immunotherapy of neuroblastoma (natural killer cells, anti-tumor antibodies, tumor associated macrophages). Dr Seeger is a reviewer for several high-impact oncology journals, and is a member of the COG NB steering committee. He earned his MD at Oregon Health Sciences University School of Medicine in Portland and completed pediatric internship and residency at the University of Minnesota Medical School in Minneapolis. Additionally, Dr Seeger obtained research fellowship training at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) and the ICRF Tumor Immunology Unit at University College London, UK.

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TWiPO #9 ~ Interview with Dr Peter Adamson

June 16, 2011

Host Dr Tim Cripe of "This Week in Pediatric Oncology" podcast interviews Dr Peter Adamson, new Chair of the Children's Oncology Group (COG). Co-hosts for this episode are Dr Jim Geller, Dr Raj Nagarajan, and Dr Lionel Chow. This conversation includes Dr Adamson's background and interest in pediatric oncology, and openly addresses the much-needed advances in drug development for pediatric tumors that are distinct from adult tumors. On the heels of the remarkable ch14.18 development story in neuroblastoma, Dr Adamson explains the need for a "virtual" drug company that consists of a public-private partnership to develop drugs in a similar narrow venue, which is underway.

Reference:

Making Better Drugs for Children with Cancer. Institute of Medicine Consensus Report. Peter C. Adamson, Susan L. Weiner, Joseph V. Simone, and Hellen Gelband, Editors. April 18, 2005 http://www.iom.edu/Reports/2005/Making-Better-Drugs-for-Children-with-Cancer.aspx

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TWiPO #8 ~ Seneca Valley virus and medulloblastoma

June 09, 2011

An oncolytic virus for a common childhood brain tumor
In this eighth episode of "This Week in Pediatric Oncology" podcast hosts Dr Tim Cripe, Dr Lars Wagner and Dr Lionel Chow discuss a recent publication by researchers at Baylor/Texas Children's in Houston that shows remarkable results of Seneca Valley virus SVV-001 on orthotopic mouse models of medulloblastoma.
The TWiPO hosts raise many interesting points about this research and highlight the strengths as well as limitations of this work. This exciting research provides new evidence of promise for oncolytic virus therapy for childhood tumors.
For more information about oncolytic virus trials for pediatric cancers, see a recent webinar "Oncolytic Virotherapy for Pediatric Solid Tumors" presented by the principal investigators of five clinical trials in children and sponsored by Solving Kids' Cancer.
The article discussed in this episode can be found here:
Another related article by the same group:
Treatment of invasive retinoblastoma in a murine model using an oncolytic picornavirus. Wadhwa L, Hurwitz MY, et al. Cancer Res. 2007 Nov 15;67(22):10653-6. [fulltext]
Please send questions or comments to twipo@solvingkidscancer.org
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TWiPO #7 ~ Interview with E. Anders Kolb and Andrew Napper on drug development

June 02, 2011

In this seventh episode of "This Week in Pediatric Oncology" TWiPO podcast, host Dr Tim Cripe interviews Dr E. Anders Kolb and Dr Andrew Napper from Nemours in Wilmington, Delaware.
This informative discussion covers the strategies, scope, and challenges of target discovery, drug development, and preclinical testing for pediatric cancers, a complex process that has been accelerated by high throughput screening technology that has only recently become available in academic settings.
Dr Kolb is the Director of Blood and Bone Marrow Transplantation at Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children, and Head of the Cancer Therapeutics Laboratory at Nemours Biomedical Research. He is also a Principal Investigator in the Pediatric Preclinical Testing Program (PPTP), a comprehensive program to systematically evaluate new agents against childhood solid tumor and leukemia models.
Dr Andrew Napper joined the research team at the Nemours Center for Childhood Cancer Research (NCCCR) in 2009 to establish its High Throughput Screening and Drug Discovery Laboratory. Dr. Napper came to Nemours from the University of Pennsylvania, where he was the Director of High Throughput Screening for the Penn Center for Molecular Discovery, one of the original ten centers established as part of the National Institutes of Health’s Roadmap initiative to discover drugs for neglected diseases.
For more information on this program and technology:
Lab Offer Hope for Kids with Cancer, Wilmington News Journal (8/24/09)
Academic screening goes high-throughput, Nature Methods 7, 787–792 (2010)
Please send questions and comments to twipo@solvingkidscancer.org
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TWiPO #6 ~ Interview with Dr Archie Bleyer

May 26, 2011

In this sixth episode of TWiPO, Dr Tim Cripe interviews Dr Archie Bleyer about his career and research interest in improving survival rates in adolescents and young adults (AYA) affected by cancer.
Dr Bleyer is the Medical Director of , Clinical Research at St. Charles Cancer Care in Bend, Oregon and a Clinical Research Professor at Oregon Health & Sciences University in Portland. He also is a Professor of Pediatrics at The University of Texas Medical School at Houston and Senior Advisor of the Aflac/CureSearch Adolescent and Young Adult Cancer Research, and founding member of the LiveStrong Young Adult Alliance.
Dr. Bleyer chaired the Children’s Cancer Group for 10 years, then the world's largest pediatric cancer research organization, and the Department and Division of Pediatrics at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. He was the American Cancer Society Professor of Clinical Oncology and in charge of the cancer curriculum in the University of Washington School of Medicine. During the past three decades, Dr. Bleyer was awarded research grants totaling more than $75 million as a principal investigator from the National Institutes of Health, the American Cancer Society, and the Leukemia Society of America. His research has been published in more than 300 peer-reviewed articles, chapters, and books.
This is an inspiring and enlightening discussion of the progress and challenges of the past 3 decades of treating children and young adults with cancer, and an optimistic view of future improvements in survival, quality of life, and reducing late effects in survivors. Listeners are welcome to send thoughts and comments to twipo@solvingkidscancer.org
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TWiPO #5 ~ Hedgehog Signaling and Itraconazole

May 19, 2011

Discussion of the role of hedgehog signaling and repositioning of drugs for pediatric cancers such as anti-fungal drug itraconazole
In this fifth episode, hosts Dr Tim Cripe and Dr Maureen O'Brien discuss the role of targeting of hedgehog signaling in diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG) and the use of drugs designed for other uses -- designed for other uses -- such as itraconazole, an anti-fungal drug found to suppress hedgehog signaling -- as a possible treatment for medulloblastoma.
1:20 feedback and comments on previous TWiPO episode
2:58 Hedgehog-responsive candidate cell of origin for diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma; (fulltext) Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2011 March 15; 108(11): 4453–4458
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Please send all comments and questions to twipo@solvingkidscancer.org
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TWiPO #4 ~ Meetings Recap and Immunotherapy for Synovial Cell Sarcoma

May 08, 2011

In this fourth episode of TWiPO host Dr Tim Cripe and co-host Dr Jim Geller discuss updates after two recent meetings and then discuss an exciting paper just published on "Tumor regression in patients with metastatic synovial cell sarcoma and melanoma using genetically engineered lymphocytes reactive with NY-ESO-1" J Clin Oncol. 2011 Mar 1;29(7):917-24. Epub 2011 Jan 31. by Paul Robbins and colleagues at the NCI.
1:23 Conference on oncolytic viruses (see recent http://vimeo.com/20002455 webinar on pediatric trials).
7:28 Conference on DIPG (Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma) at Cincinnati Children's; discussion on biology, new tumor models, and genetic profiling.
12:50 Discussion on adoptive immunotherapy using tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes in patients with metastatic melanoma and synovial cell sarcoma.
28:28 Listener email questions and answers. (send emails to twipo@solvingkidscancer.org)
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TWiPO #3 ~ Vincristine Pharmacogenetics, Irinotecan/Temozolomide for Relapsed Neuroblastoma

April 25, 2011

In this third episode, host Tim Cripe, MD, PhD, asks his co-hosts to discuss two recent papers that provide new information about genetic predisposition to increased toxicity to vincristine in some children, and the results of a phase II study using a combination therapy (irinotecan and temozolomide) in relapsed or refractory neuroblastoma.

1:24 Maureen O'Brien, MD discusses "Increased risk of vincristine neurotoxicity associated with low CYP3A5 expression genotype in children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia" in Pediatr Blood Cancer. 2011 Mar;56(3):361-7. doi: 10.1002/pbc.22845. Epub 2010 Nov 11. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21225912

22:10 Lars Wagner, MD discusses "Phase II study of irinotecan and temozolomide in children with relapsed or refractory neuroblastoma: a Children's Oncology Group study" from J Clin Oncol. 2011 Jan 10;29(2):208-13. Epub 2010 Nov 29. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21115869

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TWiPO #2 ~ Interview with Greg Reaman

April 13, 2011

In this second episode of TWiPO, host Dr Tim Cripe interviews Dr Gregory Reaman about his career in pediatric oncology, leadership of the COG, challenges, and expectations for the future.

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TWiPO #1 ~ Epidemiology of Childhood Cancer

April 11, 2011

Solving Kids' Cancer is sponsoring a free podcast series for researchers, clinicians, advocates, and others focusing on pediatric cancer research, hosted by physician-scientist Dr Timothy Cripe and colleagues at Cincinnati Children's. Podcasts will be published 2 to 4 times per month with discussions on new publications, clinical trials, interviews with thought leaders, and more. All inquiries, ideas, and comments are welcome and can be sent to twipo@solvingkidscancer.org
This first episode is a discussion among the pediatric oncologists about the recently published paper in Journal of Clinical Oncology "Outcomes for Children and Adolescents With Cancer: Challenges for the Twenty-First Century" (J Clin Oncol 28:2625-2634)
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