Introducing the First International Robert J. Arceci Innovation Award Winner [VIDEO]

by Erinn Jessop, St. Baldrick's Foundation
October 20, 2016

Instead of being bound to a specific project, researchers who receive the Robert J. Arceci Innovation Award are given the resources and the freedom to go wherever their curiosity, pioneering spirit, and passion for kids’ cancer research takes them — and the newest awardee, London’s Dr. Sam Behjati, has those three characteristics in spades. Read on (and watch the video!) for more about this innovative award and its first international winner.

Congrats Dr. Behjati

Where do cancer tumors come from?

That is the question that gets Dr. Sam Behjati’s gears turning. It keeps the researcher combing through genes in his lab near London. It’s the question he wants to answer to help kids with cancer.

And as the first international winner of the Robert J. Arceci Innovation Award, it’s a question Dr. Behjati can now explore freely — wherever it may take him.

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Meeting a Clark Kent: Our Behind-the-Scenes Tour of a Childhood Cancer Research Lab [PHOTO ESSAY]

by Erin Martorano
October 7, 2016

When 2010 Ambassador Sara was diagnosed with Wilms tumor in 2008, it was a birthday surprise her family did not expect. The now healthy 11-year-old and her family are still committed to fundraising for childhood cancer research, and they recently took a trip to Northwestern University to visit the St. Baldrick’s researcher her Hero Fund is helping support. Her mom tells the story below.

Sara with her family

Sara, bottom left, and her family at a St. Baldrick’s event in 2013.

I feel sick with guilt looking at this picture of our daughter Sara blowing out her fourth birthday candles.

Sara blowing out birthday candles days before her Wilms tumor diagnosis

29 days later, cancer barged into our home and attacked Sara.

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St. Baldrick’s and the National Brain Tumor Society Join Forces to Defeat Pediatric Brain Cancer

by Erinn Jessop, St. Baldrick's Foundation
October 6, 2016

Brain cancer is now the leading cancer killer in kids, and St. Baldrick’s has just partnered with the National Brain Tumor Society to do something about it. Read on for more about what this partnership is going to do about brain cancer and how it could revolutionize childhood cancer research forever.

St. Baldrick's + the National Brain Tumor Society

Many kids with leukemia are now getting better and surviving their cancer, thanks to great strides in childhood cancer research over the years. But unfortunately, a lot of kids with brain tumors are not seeing the same results.

In fact, brain cancer just outpaced leukemia to become the number one cancer killer in children, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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Welcome to the Childhood Cancer Club

by Lesley Ryan
September 30, 2016

Rex was only 18 months old when he was diagnosed with neuroblastoma. He’s now a happy, healthy, rambunctious 4-year-old, thanks to childhood cancer research supported by St. Baldrick’s. (Read his story here.) But as his mom explains, childhood cancer will always be a part of their lives.

Rex hospital breakfast

Rex munches on breakfast in the hospital during a checkup.

I am a member of a club. It is not one that sends out fancy invitations. It is not one that has a welcome party. It’s not a club I chose.

It is a club that is non-discriminatory. Anyone can become a member. Rich and poor, faithful and faithless, people who have it all figured out and those who just can’t seem to find their paths — all are welcome.

No one wants to join this club, and you don’t get to opt out. And once you join, you’re in it forever. You’ll pay costly dues in money, time, and heartache for the rest of your life.

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New Pediatric Oncology Training Program Bridges the Gap for Kids in Africa

by Erinn Jessop, St. Baldrick's Foundation
September 29, 2016

Dr. Joseph Lubega has big news — he’s bringing specialized pediatric cancer training to his home country of Uganda, thanks to his St. Baldrick’s International Scholar Grant and a partnership between Baylor College of Medicine and Texas Children’s Hospital. Read on for more about the pioneering program and why it will be a lifesaver for kids with cancer in the region.

Dr. Joseph Lubega speaks at the launch of the Uganda fellowship program

Dr. Lubega speaks at the launch of the fellowship program in Uganda earlier this month.

Lack of diagnosis, poor care, staggering drug costs, a deficit in specialized medical training for doctors — all of these factors make survival rare for a kid with cancer in Africa.

But St. Baldrick’s researcher Dr. Joseph Lubega hopes to change that with a pioneering program that will train a new wave of East African pediatricians in children’s oncology and hematology.

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Moving On From Cancer: The Challenges Adolescent and Young Adult Survivors Face

by Erinn Jessop, St. Baldrick's Foundation
September 23, 2016

Being a teen or young adult can be tough. Being a teen or young adult who has survived cancer is even tougher. Read on for more about the unique challenges adolescent and young adult (AYA) survivors face, and how a St. Baldrick’s researcher is reaching out to help.

Dr. Lisa Schwartz explores the health app with a patient

Psychologist Dr. Lisa Schwartz and a patient look at the health app that she’s using in her texting intervention study.

The teenage and young adult years are a time of discovery, a time to map out one’s identity, and to stretch into what could be. Those years are a coming-of-age dance, with a side of hormones, prom dates, and boundary pushing.

Sometimes it’s a little awkward, and maybe filled with more than a few mistakes. But as much as some of us wanted to skip right over them, those years are crucial.

But what happens when cancer is thrown into the mix?

That already rough developmental period gets rockier.

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The Truth About Parenting a Cancer Sibling

by Amy Dyess
September 22, 2016

We talk a lot about how childhood cancer affects the family. But what about the siblings, specifically? Ambassador Cheyenne’s mom opens up about how her 5-year-old son, Tristen, copes with his big sister’s childhood cancer journey, and how she and her husband balance their children’s needs.

Cheyenne and Tristen smiling

It’s September. This is a big month for those of us in the childhood cancer community.

If you know anyone impacted by childhood cancer, I am sure your Facebook feed is blowing up with heart wrenching facts about how underfunded the research is and how rare childhood cancer ISN’T.

One thing that tends to be forgotten is how childhood cancer impacts the rest of the family. Most specifically, the siblings.

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‘Pura Vida!’: Phineas’ Summer in Costa Rica

by Carlos Sandi
September 19, 2016

Ambassador Phineas’ dad, Carlos, shares what the family has been up to this past summer, and he looks back at where their family was 10 years ago — and where they might be now if it weren’t for the immunotherapy clinical trial that saved Phineas’ life.

Phineas Costa Rica water

Ten years ago I was nearing the end of the worst summer of my life.

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Holding on to Hope: Our Family’s DIPG Story

by Deb Fuller
September 15, 2016

At 12 years old, Hope dreamed big. She wanted to be the next Asian Taylor Swift, a doctor, a nurse, or maybe even a minster. She had a lifetime of plans to make a dreams to chase until she was diagnosed with DIPG, a pediatric brain tumor with no known cure. Her mom tells her story.

Hope smiles with her mother, Deb Fuller

There is a song that Garth Brooks sings that includes the lyrics, “Some of God’s greatest gifts are unanswered prayers.” That is exactly what Hope was to our family.

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Types of Childhood Cancer: Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG)

by Adam Green, M.D.
September 12, 2016

What is DIPG
Dr. Green is a St. Baldrick’s Fellow at the University of Colorado. He explains DIPG symptoms, treatment, and how research is helping kids with this type of childhood cancer.

What is DIPG?

DIPG stands for diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma. It is a type of high-grade glioma, a brain tumor that comes from cells called glia that surround, protect, and otherwise support the nerve cells in the brain.

DIPG is always found in the brainstem. This part of the brain controls many basic functions like breathing and swallowing, as well as muscles that help with speech and eye movements.

It is most common in elementary school-aged children, but it can affect children of any age.

Learn more about childhood cancer >

About 250 kids in the U.S. are diagnosed with DIPG each year.

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