Tag: cancer

February/March 2017 Writing for Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia

Prior to leaving my position at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia Research Institute in early December 2016, I wrote the following stories which were later published in February and March 2017:

Ring Chromosome Study to Address Neurodevelopment and DNA Looping

Powering Up Mitochondria Could Boost Military and Civilian Health

Seeing the Unseen to Change the Picture for Lymphatic Disorders

Childhood Cancer Research Effort Shoots for the Moon

CHOP Expert Advises Blue Ribbon Panel for National Cancer Moonshot Initiative

Pooling Clinical Data Aids Patient-Reported Outcomes

Leading the Way by Harnessing ‘Big Data’ to Help Little Patients

Making Headway in Understanding Autism in the Brain

Dynamic Cancer Trial Closes the Loop Between Lab and Clinic

Entrepreneurial Spirit Revving Up Pediatric Research at CHOP

CHOP’s Innovative Spina Bifida Fetal Surgery Grows Up

December 2016/January 2017 Writing for Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia

I wrote the following stories published in December 2016 and January 2017 by the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia Research Institute:

Q&A with Sage Myers: How a National System of Health Data Can Improve Care

CHOP Research In the News: Hypertension, Cancer Survivors’ Parents, Breastfeeding, Antibiotics, Allergies

Frankly, My Dear, That’s Clear to an Expert: A Q&A on ‘Frank’ Presentations of Autism

Our 12 Top Stories Show Great Things Happened for Children’s Health in 2016

A Look Back at 2016: A Banner Year for Pediatric Research at CHOP

Researchers Find Compelling Preclinical Evidence for High-Risk Leukemia Therapies

Trio of Studies Shows Oral Antibiotics Are As Good As IV Antibiotics After Discharge

Neuroblastoma Genetics Study Seeks to Spell Out Structural Errors

Transformational Science: Q&A with Douglas Wallace, PhD, Winner of Franklin Medal

October 2016 Writing for Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia

I wrote (or edited, as noted) the following articles published in October 2016 by the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia Research Institute:

Scientists Seek Mitochondrial Mechanism to Overcome Cancer Treatment Resistance

Finding of Variability in Antibiotic Prescribing Yields Improvements, Accolades

Project Aims to Automate Adverse Event Reporting in Cancer Clinical Trials

In a Teenager’s Brain, HIV Infection Could Cause Unique Damage

How to Address Four Factors That Limit Gender Equality in Academic Medicine

I noticed a CHOP-affiliated co-author, Dr. Ganetzky, listed on a piece in the journal Academic Medicine calling for action on gender equality. I approached Dr. Ganetzky with the idea for a guest blog post on the subject and worked with her to refine and edit the post for publication.

CHOP Research In the News: Ear Infection Genetics, Childhood Cancer Heredity, Vaccine Anniversary

CHOP, Penn Researchers Share Progress and Tips for Using mHealth Tools

CHOP Research In the News: Cancer Moonshot Yields Data-Sharing Initiatives, Hemophilia Surprise, Mitochondrial Medal

Mentorship in Medicine, Zebras, and Holsteins: Q&A with Elaine Zackai

September 2016 Writing for The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia

I wrote the following stories published by The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia Research Institute in September 2016:

Going with the Flow: How Lymphatics is Emerging as Medicine’s Newest Specialty

Pediatricians May Better Help Parents Quit Smoking With Decision Support Tool

Discovering How a Neurological ‘Pit Crew’ Keeps the Brain on Track

Scientists Identify Molecule Controlling Inflammatory Immune Response

Neuroblastoma Drug Candidates Target Key Henchmen of a Supervillain Oncogene

Fresh Hope for Treating a Rare Progressive, Lysosomal Storage Childhood Disease

CHOP Research In the News: Cancer Moonshot, Why Children Get Cancer, and a Push for Vaccination

Patients as Partners and the Legacy of Henrietta Lacks: A Q&A with David Lacks

Do Food Allergies Increase the Risk of Asthma? Key Questions From a New Study

CHOP Research In the News: Emmy Award, Kids and the Cancer Moonshot, Precision Approach to Epilepsy, Concussion Monitoring App

April 2016 Writing for The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia

I wrote the following articles published by The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia Research Institute in April 2016:

Restoring Balance in the Brain After Concussion

CHOP Oncologist Appointed to Blue Ribbon Panel for National Cancer Moonshot

Teaching a Computer to See Like a Dermatologist

Study Maps Early Connectivity Networks in Newborn Babies’ Brains

CHOP Research In the News: Transgender Youth, Vaccines, and Sleep

In Bench to Bedside: Finding Research Success in Setbacks

Growing Into Healthy Relationships: A Teen Dating Violence Q&A

CHOP Research In the News: Genetic Superheroes, Excess Bone, and Secondhand Smoke

Coordinating Research with 80 Million Participants: A PCORnet Q&A

Hakon Hakonarson Honored for Excellence in Research Mentoring

CHOP Research In the News: Plastic Bronchitis, Baby BMI, Voice at the Vatican

Four Projects, One Goal: Curing Childhood Cancer

Originally published in Bench to Bedside, the CHOP Research monthly publication.

I prepared this article based on the project descriptions and email correspondence with the investigators.


Many cancer treatments have harmful side effects when they act on healthy tissues in addition to cancer cells. A team led by Garrett M. Brodeur, MD, director of the Cancer Predisposition Program at CHOP, and funded by a CURE grant, is seeking ways to increase drug delivery to the tumors to improve drugs’ effectiveness while reducing their toxicity.

Their method uses tiny nanoparticles as delivery vehicles. Nanoparticles are a promising way to get drugs into tumors because tumor blood vessels are leaky, and the nanoparticles can enter the tumor much more easily than normal tissues.

“By increasing drug delivery to tumors by one or two orders of magnitude, we can achieve dramatically better anti-tumor effects while simultaneously decreasing total drug exposure to patients,” Dr. Brodeur said.

CHOP Big Data Center Visits White House for Precision Medicine Summit

Originally published on Cornerstone, the CHOP Research Blog.

I composed this original article based on an interview with the investigator.


Today at the White House, President Obama welcomed guests, including Adam Resnick, PhD, representing The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, for a morning of remarks and discussions about what the Precision Medicine Initiative (PMI) has achieved to date, and how it can take the next steps into the new era of medicine that delivers the right treatment at the right time to the right person. One way CHOP will be an integral part of that effort is through its commitment to data-driven discovery in pediatrics.

The PMI, which President Obama first announced in his 2015 State of the Union speech, launched last year with a White House event attended by CHOP leukemia patient Emily Whitehead and by the hospital’s then-CEO, Steven Altschuler, MD. The pair was invited in recognition of the progress at CHOP and the University of Pennsylvania in developing an investigational precision-medicine T-cell therapy for cancer patients like Emily.

But that type of discovery is only one part of the precision medicine equation, according to Dr. Resnick, co-director and co-founder of CHOP’s new Center for Data-Driven Discovery in Biomedicine (D3B).

“Even to make a new T-cell therapy, you have to begin with data about what to target,” Dr. Resnick said. “The other side of the coin in harnessing the potential of precision medicine is empowering the pediatric community to share and use data transparently and collaboratively through initiatives that connect patients, clinicians, and researchers to that data.”