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TSF Supports Dr. Foreman’s Latest Work
Foreman: R01 for immune research in ependymoma
Dr. Nicholas Foreman (UCCC Developmental Therapeutics/SOM Pediatrics/Children’s Hospital Colorado) has received a $1.2 million, four-year NCI R01 to continue groundbreaking work into his group’s discovery that immune gene and cell enrichment is associated with a good prognosis in ependymoma.About half of children diagnosed with ependymoma brain tumors recur after standard treatment—surgery and radiation—and most who recur will die, says Foreman, director of pediatric neuro-oncology at Children’s Hospital Colorado. One in 11 pediatric brain tumors are ependymomas, with about 200 new cases of the disease in the United States each year. In the Nov. 16, 2009, issue of the Journal of Immunology, Foreman and colleagues showed that:
- Genes associated with nonrecurrent ependymoma were predominantly immune function-related.
- Increased expression of immune-related genes were correlated with longer time to progression in recurrent ependymoma.
- 95 percent of genes associated with both of these phenotypes associated with immune function, and a histological analysis of a gene subset showed their expression was restricted to a subpopulation of tumor-infiltrating cells—predominantly CD4 T cells in the nonrecurrent type.
Immune Gene and Cell Enrichment Is Associated with a Good Prognosis in Ependymoma
“As we looked closely at the tumor cells, we realized this immune expression wasn’t a function of the tumor, but of the immune cells which, in some cases, were in large quantities in the tumor,” says Foreman. “It turned out to be the first demonstration in any brain tumor that the immune status of the individual at diagnosis is directly related to his or her chance of being cured.”The researchers also found that certain aspects of the immune function could be blocking treatment’s effectiveness, which flies against common belief that all immune reactions to a tumor are positive. Foreman’s work is based on a human model of the immune system and outcomes. Most other experiments have been done in animal models. It also uses a new technique that uses tumor samples that are flash-frozen in the operating room. “We disrupt the tissue and then separate the cells using Flow Cytometry to study them in more detail,” he says. “At first, we weren’t sure this could be done on frozen cells, but we’ve proven it works well and allows us to look in detail at individual subcell populations, not only what cells they are but their activation states. We think this technique will finally allow us to detail the immune response.”Foreman, who is chair of the COG ependymoma committee, says none of this work would have been possible without support from the family of Tanner Seebaum, a patient who had recurrent ependymoma and survived. Tanner’s family helped found an endowed chair (held jointly at Children’s Hospital Colorado and the SOM) and the Seebaum Foundation also made direct gifts to support the research.Foreman’s Colorado collaborators are Dr. Andrew Donson, senior research associate in the Foreman lab, UCCC members Drs. Bette DeMasters (UCCC Immunology & Immunotherapy/SOM Pathology), Allen Waziri (UCCC Immunology & Immunotherapy/SOM Neurosurgery), and Michael Wang (Cancer Cell Biology/SOM Pediatrics); and Dr. Michael Handler, chief of pediatric neurosurgery at the SOM and Children’s Hospital Colorado.
Radiothon for Kids: February 13-15, 2008
For the 7th straight year, Alice 105.9 will be broadcasting LIVE for 12 hours daily from the new Children’s Hospital Colorado. The airways will be filled with stories of hope and miracles that will warm your heart: just in time for Valentine’s Day!
Alice’s 36 Hours for Kids Radiothon is back!
Alice 105.9 will host their annual radiothon at Children’s Hospital Colorado February 13-15th. On Feb. 13th, tune in between 11:00-11:30 AM to listen to our story.
WHAT: Each year, we break from our normal format to broadcast live from the lobby of The Children’s Hospital. For three straight days, we highlight the incredible stories of hope and the miracles that take place there.
WHO: Alice’s 36 Hours for Kids is brought to you by Marriott and underwritten by Foresters. Our other great sponsors include Big O Tires, Alpine Buick-Pontiac-GMC, King Soopers, Ace Hardware and Love & Logic Institute.
WHY: The kids! Alice’s 36 Hours for Kids is instrumental in raising funds and awareness for Children’s Hospital Colorado. Listen and be part of the miracle. Don’t miss this year as we hear more remarkable stories from Children’s Hospital Colorado and try to raise over $1 million in just 36 hours!
HOW: You can help Alice and Children’s Miracle Network raise more than $1 million for Children’s Hospital Colorado by calling 1-800-458-KIDS or click here to give online!
Source: Alice 105.9FM Event Page
Living with Brain Cancer
February 1, 2008, Centennial Citizen Newspaper – In an article entitled “Living with Brain Cancer”, Staff Writer Peter Jones shares Tanner and his story with our local community.
We are grateful for the opportunity to tell Tanner’s story as he continues to grow and his story continues to develop. We are also excited to share the work that we’re doing to make a difference for those who are living with tumors of the brain and spine.
Thanks to the folks at Centennial Citizen for helping us spread the word. Download the PDF version of the article.