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NCI Cancer Center News

Large multicenter study sequences genes of neuroblastoma

  • Posted: January 22, 2013

An extensive genomic study of the childhood cancer neuroblastoma reinforces the challenges in treating the most aggressive forms of this disease. Contrary to expectations, the scientists found relatively few recurrent gene mutations—mutations that would suggest new targets for neuroblastoma treatment. Instead, say the researchers, they have now refocused on how neuroblastoma tumors evolve in response to medicine and other factors. The study included participants from the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania (home of the Abramson Cancer Center), the Broad Institute, Harvard Medical School, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and the University of British Columbia.

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Among the research institutions NCI funds across the United States, it currently designates 67 as Cancer Centers. Largely based in research universities, these facilities are home to many of the NCI-supported scientists who conduct a wide range of intense, laboratory research into cancer’s origins and development. The Cancer Centers Program also focuses on trans-disciplinary research, including population science and clinical research. The centers’ research results are often at the forefront of studies in the cancer field.