Childhood Cancer

Micah and the Unituxin Trial

by Erinn Jessop, St. Baldrick's Foundation
September 9, 2015

Micah dances alongside hospital monitors

Micah dances to his favorite song, “Let It Go,” in his hospital room at CHLA. A nurse helped him with some choreography and whenever Micah has visitors he puts on a show.

Micah is literally dancing through treatment.

Careful of the lines attached to an IV in his wrist and to a port in his chest, the 4-year-old will raise his hands and twist his hips in his room at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA), where he’s participating in a clinical trial partly funded by St. Baldrick’s.

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Families

Rocking Treatment and Raising Funds for Research: Roxie’s Story

by Erinn Jessop, St. Baldrick's Foundation
August 31, 2015

In 2011, Holly and Nick’s world turned upside down. Their 3-year-old daughter, Roxie, was diagnosed with neuroblastoma. Four years later, Roxie shows no evidence of disease, and the family is devoted to raising money for childhood cancer research and boosting the public’s awareness of a little-known disease.

Roxie is held upside down by one of her parents

Roxie was diagnosed with neuroblastoma at just 3 years old.

Roxie wanted to help. So, the little girl stood up on her hospital bed, grabbed the blood pressure cuff from its place on the wall and slipped it over her tiny arm. Remembering the sequence of buttons the nurses pressed, she let her little fingers do the walking and presto — the machine began to whir.

Just as the nurses arrived, 3-year-old Roxie had already started taking her own vitals.

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Families

Seven-Year Survivor: An Update on Ambassador Khalid

by Erinn Jessop, St. Baldrick's Foundation
August 25, 2015

St. Baldrick’s 2010 Ambassador Khalid was just 2 years old when he was diagnosed with childhood cancer. Now, seven years have passed and he’s not just surviving — he’s thriving.

Four-year-old Khalid flies a toy space shuttle

Four-year-old Ambassador Khalid flies a toy space shuttle in this photo from 2010, when he was chosen to be an Ambassador.

It’s been five years since Khalid was picked as an Ambassador for St. Baldrick’s and a lot has changed.

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Families

The Boy Who Just Wanted to Play: Gary’s Story

by Erinn Jessop, St. Baldrick's Foundation
August 18, 2015

Two decades after his passing, Anne remembers her son, Gary, who was diagnosed with childhood cancer in 1989. She misses him, but she knows her son wouldn’t want her to be angry or sad. Instead, she tries to live joyfully, just like he did. “I believe that we need to enjoy each day to the fullest and not muddle in the things we don’t like about life,” she said. “I choose to enjoy life.”

Gary tugs on his suspenders

Gary was diagnosed with neuroblastoma at 21 months old. He had a tumor in his belly and behind his right eye.

When Anne looks at her twin grandkids, they remind her of Gary. They remind her to keep going. They bring her so much joy, just like he did.

They’re just a little older than Gary was when he went into the hospital for the final time.

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Facts

Babies and Cancer [Q&A]

by Erin Breese, M.D.
August 11, 2015

Anyone can get cancer — even babies. Dr. Erin Breese, a St. Baldrick’s Fellow studying infant leukemia, explains the signs, symptoms and treatment of babies with cancer, and how research is helping pinpoint better therapies so babies with cancer can grow up to live long, healthy lives.

a baby's feet

Can babies get cancer?

Unfortunately, cancer can occur at any age including during infancy. According to recent statistics, roughly 23 of every 100,000 babies are diagnosed with cancer each year.

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Research

Progress in MIBG Therapy Makes Treatment More Accessible For Kids With Neuroblastoma

by Erinn Jessop, St. Baldrick's Foundation
July 23, 2015

It’s been three years since we first reported on a new treatment for neuroblastoma called MIBG therapy. Since then, a lot has changed and even more exciting developments are on the horizon. Here’s an update.

MIBG therapy

In MIBG therapy, a child is given an infusion of a radioactive iodine coupled with MIBG, a molecule which is absorbed by neuroblastoma cells. The MIBG molecule is taken up by the tumor cells and the radioactive iodine goes to work, killing the cancer.

Just a few short years ago, this therapy was hard to come by for kids with neuroblastoma. The trickiness of dealing with the radiation meant that just a few institutions offered it. For some families, hours of travel were needed to get their child access to the treatment.

That’s changed in a big way.

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Research

St. Baldrick’s Researcher Discovers New Target in the Fight Against Neuroblastoma

by Erinn Jessop, St. Baldrick's Foundation
June 29, 2015

St. Baldrick’s Scholar Dr. Muller Fabbri, of the Saban Research Institute at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, just published exciting new research — he and his team learned that one of the keys to cancer’s survival lies in communication. Read on for how his discovery could unlock new gene therapies for kids with drug-resistant neuroblastoma.

Dr. Fabbri gives us a biology lesson

Dr. Fabbri explains his research to a visiting group of St. Baldrick’s staffers.

Years ago, over a salad and a carton of yogurt at a campus deli, Dr. Muller Fabbri had an idea.

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Advocacy

Ambassador Lauren Heads to Capitol Hill for Childhood Cancer Action Days

by Lauren Bendesky
June 15, 2015

Today, 2014 Ambassador Lauren is among more than 300 childhood cancer advocates in Washington, D.C., fighting to make childhood cancer a national priority. Here’s what she wants Congress to know.

St. Baldrick's Ambassador Lauren Bendesky

As I prepare to speak on Capitol Hill for Childhood Cancer Action Days, I can’t help but look back on my grueling journey with pediatric cancer.

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Do What You Want

How I Celebrate My Son on Two Wheels

by Susan Heard
May 14, 2015

Every year in honor of her son David’s birthday, Susan rides the 40-mile New York City Five Boro Bike Tour. This year, with their feet on the pedals, the wind at their backs (and sometimes their fronts), and 32,000 people riding alongside them, Susan and her friends raised over $4,000 for the David’s Warriors Hero Fund. Susan explains what the ride means to her.

Susan and her cycling friends in front of the Robert F. Kennedy Bridge during the Five Boro Bike Tour.

Susan and her cycling friends in front of the Robert F. Kennedy Bridge.

In 2009 as our son, David, was battling neuroblastoma, one of his incredible Cub Scout leaders rode the New York City Five Boro Bike Tour in David’s honor. It’s a 40-mile ride touching each borough in the city, complete with amazing street music, skyline views that take your breath away, and an opportunity to feel the beat of the city in a way that is just spectacular.

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Advocacy

BREAKING NEWS: FDA Approves Childhood Cancer Drug

by St. Baldrick's Foundation
March 11, 2015

We’ve got some spectacular news. Really, really big news.

The FDA Has Approved a New Childhood Cancer Treatment

In the last 20 years, only two new drugs have been approved that were specifically developed to treat children with cancer.

Yesterday, that changed. Now there are three.

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