Dr. Susan Blaney, professor of pediatrics-hematology/oncology at Baylor College of Medicine, was appointed as vice chair of the National Cancer Institute-funded Children's Oncology Group, an international consortium of more than 200 childhood cancer centers with the goal of preventing and curing childhood cancer through scientific discovery and compassionate care.

Blaney was appointed by the chair of the COG and unanimously endorsed by the COG's Executive Committee and will serve in the position for five years. Her responsibilities in the position as vice chair will include working with the COG operations center to ensure timely development and implementation of innovative clinical and translational research protocols for children with cancer.

"Childhood cancer is the leading cause of nonaccidental death in children but by working as a consortium of institutes through the Children's Oncology Group, we have made tremendous progress in treating cancer," said Blaney, who is also deputy director of the Texas Children's Cancer Center. "Cure rates for childhood cancer have increased from less than 10 percent in the 1950's to nearly 80 percent today through collaborative clinical and translational research studies."

Blaney is currently on the executive and scientific committees of the Children's Oncology Group, chair of the Developmental Therapy Committee, and principal investigator of the COG's Phase I and Pilot Consortium.

Blaney, who was recently named co-director of BCM's new Institute for Clinical and Translational Research and is associate director of clinical research at BCM's NCI-designated Dan L Duncan Cancer Center, also is a member of the National Cancer Institute's Investigational Drug Steering Committee and serves on its Coordinating Committee. She serves as a consultant for the FDA's Oncology Drug Advisory Committee and has been published in more than 150 peer-reviewed journal articles.