Research

Stop, Collaborate and Listen: How Teamwork Makes the Dream Team Work

by Erinn Jessop, St. Baldrick's Foundation
March 16, 2017

When people come together for a cause, incredible things happen. That’s true for St. Baldrick’s head-shaving events AND for the lifesaving work done by St. Baldrick’s researchers, especially the Stand Up To Cancer - St. Baldrick’s Pediatric Dream Team. As they say, teamwork makes the dream work! Read on to learn more about how cooperation and sharing between these researchers means big advances for kids with cancer.

St. Baldrick's - Stand Up To Cancer Pediatric Cancer Dream Team

They say two heads are better than one. But what about 149? That is how many brilliant brains are working together to conquer childhood cancers as part of the SU2C – St. Baldrick’s Pediatric Cancer Dream Team.

And it’s that cooperation that’s accelerating progress for kids and laying the foundation for better treatments and for cures, said Dr. Crystal Mackall and Dr. John Maris, co-leaders of the Dream Team.

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Families

Three Years of Surprises: Aiden’s Story

by Jeena Gould, St. Baldrick's Foundation
July 1, 2016

Before Honored Kid Aiden was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia in October 2015, there seemed to be more questions than answers. But just recently, he completed his chemotherapy treatment and is loving life as a 3-year-old kid. Read on to hear about Aiden’s remarkable childhood cancer journey.

Aiden drinking milk out of straw glasses

Aiden slurping his milk from his silly straw glasses.

Aiden’s parents shouldn’t have been able to have kids.

After trying for so many years to have children — and losing some along the way — they knew something was wrong.

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Families

From Denial to Triumph: A Grandfather’s Journey With Childhood Cancer

by Gary Crays
June 17, 2016

When Gary Crays found out his grandson, Ezra, had childhood cancer, he was devastated. Read Gary’s account of what it was like to witness Ezra’s childhood cancer journey and how St. Baldrick’s gave him a way to fight back.

Gary holds Ezra in the park

Ezra was diagnosed with juvenile myelomonocytic leukemia (JMML) when he was 4 months old.

Denial. That’s what I felt when I first learned that my newborn grandson, Ezra, had abnormal blood counts.

His parents and his big brother were as healthy as could be, and his mother was careful to extremes during her pregnancy. I thought, “Whatever this is, it will quickly resolve itself.”

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Families

The Best Worst News: Ezra’s Story

by Elisabeth Parker
June 16, 2016

Since his birth three years ago, little Ezra has learned to love airplanes, chocolate milk, and his big brother. He’s also learned what it’s like to have childhood cancer. Read what Ezra’s mom, Elisabeth, has to say about his early diagnosis and how some bad news ended up saving Ezra’s life.

Ezra with his glasses on

Ezra, now in remission, was diagnosed with juvenile myelomonocytic leukemia (JMML) when he was 4 months old.

On the morning of April 20, 2013, we welcomed our second son, our sweet, little Ezra. For a couple hours, all was well with the world.

We can’t remember the exact moment, or the exact words that first brought news of Ezra’s medical issues, but nothing could have prepared us for the frightening journey we embarked upon that day.

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Survivors

‘She’s a Fighter’: Abby Stays Strong After Her Bone Marrow Transplant [VIDEO]

by St. Baldrick's Foundation
June 5, 2016

Today is National Cancer Survivors Day, and we’re bringing you an update on one incredible 9-year-old: Abby. (You might remember her from this video.) Abby’s cancer free today, but for the past year, she’s been battling complications of the bone marrow transplant that saved her life.

Watch the new video to see why cancer free doesn’t mean trouble free.

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Research

Kids Are Not Little Adults: Researcher Studies Differences in AML Across Age Groups

by Erinn Jessop, St. Baldrick's Foundation
May 26, 2016

Kids are special, and that’s why they need treatments made just for them. St. Baldrick’s Fellow Dr. Heather Schuback agrees. She’s looking at the very building blocks of acute myeloid leukemia cells to spot differences that could help kids get the targeted therapy they need.

Dr. Heather Schuback at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center

St. Baldrick’s Fellow Dr. Heather Schuback works in the lab at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, Washington.

Kids are not just little adults, says St. Baldrick’s Fellow Dr. Heather Schuback.

That means their cancers aren’t just smaller, younger versions of adult cancers. They are fundamentally different.

Dr. Schuback should know. Her St. Baldrick’s-funded research is looking at how changes in the DNA of tumor cells can predict who will do well during treatment and who won’t. This information could help doctors tailor therapies from the start, getting kids just the right amount of treatment to kill the cancer, while limiting late-effects.

But these differences aren’t limited to which kids will respond well to treatment and which won’t. It’s bigger than that.

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Advocacy

‘Imagine What It’s Like’: Carlos Takes His Story to Capitol Hill

by Carlos Sandi
May 17, 2016

Yesterday, Ambassador Phineas’ dad, Carlos, joined more than 200 childhood cancer advocates on Capitol Hill to drum up support in Washington for kids with cancer. He opened up about what it’s like to have two children diagnosed with cancer, how research saved his son’s life, and why he won’t stop telling his family’s story. Read his powerful speech below.

Carlos and Phineas Sandi

Carlos with his son, Phineas. Phineas was diagnosed with cancer when he was 4, six years after his sister Althea died of childhood cancer.

I live in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, but like most of my neighbors, I’m not actually from North Carolina. Chapel Hill is a college town where new people come and go every year.

Whenever my wife and I meet people for the first time, one of the first questions we get asked is, “So, how did you end up in Chapel Hill?”

When I hear that question, I always freeze for a second because I have to decide carefully how I want to answer.

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News

Changing the Game: A New Type of Funding for Kids’ Cancer Research

by Becky C. Weaver, Chief Mission Officer, St. Baldrick's Foundation
May 13, 2016

Today we’re announcing a new childhood cancer research grant unlike any other. Rather than funding a specific research project, this award is giving one talented researcher the freedom to pursue whatever discoveries he finds over the next three years. Read on for more about why this award is so revolutionary, the brilliant man who inspired it, and the lucky winner who’s changing lives of kids with cancer.

Dr. Arceci

The Robert J. Arceci Innovation Award was inspired by Dr. Arceci, a beloved childhood cancer researcher, innovator, and champion of researchers everywhere.

There’s a big problem with childhood cancer research today. And it goes beyond the funding shortage.

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Families

Dear Mom, Thank You for Always Being There for Me

by Sarah Swaim
May 7, 2016

2012 Ambassador Sarah’s childhood cancer journey was nothing less than difficult. But through it all, she had the constant support from her mom. Read Sarah’s sweet letter to her mom for Mother’s Day.

Sarah and her mom at a St. Baldrick's event

Sarah was diagnosed with biphenotypic leukemia in August 2003.

Dear Mom,

Where do I even begin to thank you for all you have given and done for me? To be honest, it’s a little daunting.

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Events and Fundraisers

Sarah’s Shave for Abby [VIDEO]

by St. Baldrick's Foundation
April 27, 2016

Last month, 2012 Ambassador Sarah told us how excited she was for her upcoming shave. We were, too — so we filmed it!

When Sarah Swaim says that she knows what kids with cancer are going through, it’s true.

That’s because the three-time shavee is also a two-time childhood cancer survivor.

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