Two Baylor College of Medicine researchers are included in the Rally Foundation for Childhood Cancer Research grants for 2013. In all, $1 million was awarded to 23 medical institutions across the country to support childhood cancer research.
Dr. Daniel Lacorazza, associate professor of pathology and immunology at BCM and a researcher with Texas Children’s Hospital, along with Dr. Jason Yustein, assistant professor of pediatrics and a physician in the Texas Children’s Cancer Center were both chosen for their work related to childhood cancers.
"My laboratory is working on testing a natural product for the treatment of acute lymphoblastic leukemia, the most common blood cancer in children. Despite successful treatment, still 20 percent of patients do not respond to therapy and relapse disease is the leading cause of cancer-related death in children," said Lacorazza.
Rally and its medical advisory board ensure the most promising research is funded by awarding grants through a competitive peer review process. All grants are made in honor or memory of a Rally Kid, a child who has fought or is currently fighting cancer.
"This award will allow our laboratory to investigate novel insights into mechanisms and pathways required for rhabdomyosarcoma development and progression. We anticipate these studies will determine novel therapeutic targets that can eventually be translated to the care of our patients," Yustein said.
Dean Crowe, founder and CEO of Rally said, "It is important to fund scientists like Drs. Lacorazza and Yustein as we work toward closing the childhood cancer research funding gap so that no parent ever has to hear that their child has cancer."
Since its founding in 2005, Rally has distributed more than $4 million to more than 75 childhood cancer research projects nationwide. To see the list of grant recipients and to learn more visit the Rally Foundation.