Children’s Cancer Research Fund is proud to announce it has been selected as the philanthropy partner for the 2019 Forbes/SHOOK Top Advisors Summit in Las Vegas on February 25-27. The event, a gathering of the nation’s top wealth advisors, will raise funds to enable a clinical trial for a new, potentially lifesaving therapy for children with brain tumors, including glioblastoma, one of the deadliest pediatric cancers.
Christopher Moertel, MD and Michael Olin, PhD, researchers at the Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota, discovered a protein associated with the cancer that prohibits vaccines from working to eliminate the brain tumors. The protein, called CD200, helps cancer cells avoid detection by the body’s immune system.
Olin has found a solution to inhibit the protein, through the use of tiny peptides, allowing the vaccine to work more effectively and supporting the immune system. Initial studies in animals, including canine patients, show incredible promise and a clinical trial for adults is set to launch this winter. A pediatric clinical trial is a necessary next step to bring the therapy to children around the country. More than 4,000 kids and teens are diagnosed with brain or spinal cord tumors each year in the United States.
Researchers also believe this breakthrough will enhance the effectiveness of current therapies for many other cancers, including breast, ovarian and prostate cancers, as well as melanoma.
“Every so often in the field of cancer therapy, these huge steps happen that make a big difference for a lot of people,” said Moertel. “We really think this has the promise to do that, and support from CCRF and SHOOK Research will help us get it done as quickly as possible.”
During the Forbes/SHOOK Top Advisors Summit, attendees will learn more about the groundbreaking research from Dr. Moertel and hear from two families whose lives have been impacted by brain tumors—Lindsay and Zack Mertz, whose daughter Maddison passed away in 2017, and Bernadette and Kevin Long, whose son Connor is currently in treatment for brain cancer.
“Cancer is the biggest killer among children after accidents, so we all need to battle this together,” said R.J. Shook, founder of SHOOK Research. “I promised a two-year-old boy, Conner, we will fight this together, and that I would do anything I can to help him and others.”
Learn more about the latest in brain tumor research
To learn more about the latest in brain tumor research, read our articles “Making the Most Impact – Treating Childhood Brain Tumors,” “Caden’s Story – Surviving a Brain Tumor” and “Breakthroughs in Brain Tumor Research.”