Molecular-Guided Therapy Now Available for Pediatric Cancer Patients

Javier Oesterheld, MD
Pediatric Oncologist and Director of the Developmental Therapeutics Program

Levine Children’s Hospital Pediatric Oncology Developmental Therapeutics Program (DVL) is actively recruiting patients from across the region for an innovative clinical trial that  will help researchers discover new ways to understand and better treat several pediatric cancers.

Javier Oesterheld, MD, pediatric oncologist and director of the Developmental Therapeutics Program, said Levine Children’s Hospital is one of a limited number of sites in the country to offer this personalized medicine study.

“Our clinical teams can give patients the chance to enroll in a trial where we use the patient’s own tumor to make an individualized chemotherapy plan,” Dr. Oesterheld said.

Peter Anderson, MD
Director of Pediatric Hematology, Oncology and Blood and Marrow Transplant at Levine Children’s Hospital

Dr. Oesterheld led the effort for Levine Children’s Hospital to become members of the Therapeutic Advances in Childhood Leukemia and Lymphoma and the Neuroblastoma and Medulloblastoma Translational Research Consortium (NMTRC). Membership in these groups provides patients with treatments that are not available elsewhere, such as investigational drugs or new combinations of approved drugs for children and adolescents with recurrent cancers who currently have no curative treatments available.

Peter Anderson, MD, PhD, the director of pediatric hematology, oncology and blood and marrow transplant at Levine Children’s Hospital, said being part of NMTRC proves the hospital is growing in the right direction and has the clinical expertise in place to support trials such as this one.

“The trials are based on the research from a group of closely collaborating investigators who are connected with laboratory programs that develop new therapies for high-risk neuroblastoma and medulloblastoma,” Dr. Anderson said. “This gives us a way to deliver personalized medicine to our pediatric patients in a way that is specific to their disease and their needs.”

Learn more about Levine Children's Hospital's DVL program and its pediatric clinical trials