See also our related blog for the Pediatric Preclinical Testing Initiative.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Congratulations, Lisa!

We couldn't be more proud than to announce that our graduate student, Lisa Nevell, has been accepted for a position as a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of 2007 Nobel laureate Mario R. Capecchi at the University of Utah. (Mario was Charles' mentor, too, but many more years ago.) Lisa was a joint graduate student of George Washington University and UTHSCSA. Her project in our lab was to understand the function of the gene Pax7, which controls neuromuscular development and embryonic patterning. Congratulations, Lisa, and Best Wishes!
[ pictured above right: Lisa Nevell (left), her GWU mentor Bernard Wood (center), and science enthusiast Don Mopsick of NPR Riverwalk Jazz fame;
pictured to the left: going away lunch for Lisa yesterday. quote having just arrived from DC and her defense: "I was so happy to be back home in Texas!" next stop, of course, is Salt Lake City. ]

Friday, September 26, 2008

Mandy and Hunter present at the RISE/MARC Symposium

Mandy and Hunter gave a terrific presentation today at the University of Texas San Antonio (UTSA) Annual RISE/MARC Symposium. While the details of their study will be described in an upcoming manuscript, we are very proud of the teamwork and initiative shown by Mandy and Hunter on this complex series of experiments studying bone marrow stem cells in genetically-engineered mice!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Welcoming Rotation Student, Lilly Paredes

Lilliana "Lilly" Paredes graduated from the University of Texas El Paso with a major in Biology this past Spring. As an undergraduate, Lilly participated in a molecular parasitology research laboratory at UTEP. This exciting and productive experience inspired her to pursue a research career. As a first year graduate student in the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at UTHSCSA, Lilly's current interests include Microbiology, Genetics and Pharmacology. During her Fall rotation in our laboratory, Lilly will be co-mentored by Koichi and Charles.

[pictured above: Lilly on a recent trip to NYC.]

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Today is National Childhood Cancer Awareness Day

National Childhood Cancer Awareness Day draws attention to more than 12,000 children are diagnosed with cancer each year in the United States with many fold more children diagnosed across the Americas and worldwide. While outcome for the most common form of childhood leukemia has improved from a 5% cure rate forty-five years ago to more than 90% now, many other childhood cancers have cure rates are less desirable and unimproved for decades. New research and new targeted therapies are thus needed.

The bi-partisan Allard-Clinton "National Childhood Cancer Awareness Day" Resolution was sponsored by Senators Wayne Allard (CO) and Hillary Rodham Clinton (NY). See also the Curesearch story.

[ pictured above: The Greehey Children's Cancer Research Institute (GCCRI), created by means of a $200M endowment by the Texas legislature. The GCCRI is the most substantial public investment in childhood cancer research since the founding of the St Jude Children's Research Hospital in 1962 (more than 4 decades ago). Click here to contribute to childhood cancer research. ]

Monday, September 1, 2008

In Memoriam: Stephen J. Qualman, M.D.

We are very sad to learn of the passing of Dr. Stephen Qualman, a pioneer in pediatric sarcoma research and a advocate of multi-disciplinary collaborations. Steve's own 13 month battle with pancreatic cancer is said to have ended Saturday.

For more than 24 years Steve has been a leader in pediatric oncology pathology. He founded the Biopathology Center at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, which is known to be a prototype for national biorepositories. He also had a very active and productive rhabdomyosarcoma research program. We felt privileged to work with him on collaborations past and present. He was everyone's friend, and truely believed that childhood cancer could be cured. His selfless efforts over so many years attest to this. Appropriately, Steve was awarded the American Cancer Society Hero of Hope Medal of Honor just days ago. His example will be remembered by many.

Steve will be greatly missed by his colleagues, and our hearts go out to his family.

[picture source: ]