July 2013

“I think Emily’s story shows how important it is to fund medical research. If it weren’t for this medical research, we wouldn’t be parents now.”- Emily's mother, Kari Whitehead

CHOP Research Announces New DNA-Protein Interaction Affinity Group


Since the completion of the Human Genome Project, there has been a natural surge in biomedical research aimed at gene discovery. Using genome-wide association studies (GWAS), bioinformatics, and other approaches, this process has focused largely on determining what genes are implicated in specific diseases. While this process may shed light on what genes are involved in diseases, it has done littl …

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Using Capsid Decoys to Divert Antibodies from Neutralizing Gene Therapy


Gene therapy researchers at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia have produced a bioengineered decoy that by fooling the immune system prevents it from undermining benefits delivered by a corrective gene. The decoy, which proved effective in animal studies, could offer a new treatment for genetic diseases such as hemophilia while advancing the broader field of gene therapy if the approach succe …

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CHOP Cancer Experts Awarded Alex’s Lemonade Stand Grants


As part of its mission to find “a cure for all children with cancer,” Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation recently announced more than $7 million in new grants to researchers around the country, including four at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Children’s Hospital investigators Garrett Brodeur, MD, Michael Hogarty, MD, Richard Aplenc, MD, and Robert Schnepp, MD, PhD, all received grants from …

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Duke Researcher, CHOP Alum Named Physician-in-Chief


Noted microbiologist and Children’s Hospital alumnus Joseph W. St. Geme, III, MD, was recently named CHOP’s Physician-in-Chief and Chair of the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. St. Geme, who officially started July 1, succeeds long-serving CHOP veteran Alan R. Cohen, MD, who held the post of Physician-in-Chief for 12 years. After receiving his medical degree from Har …

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Health Services Expert Jeffrey H. Silber, MD, PhD, Named to New Endowed Chair


Pediatrician and healthcare economist Jeffrey H. Silber, MD, PhD has been named the first Nancy Abramson Wolfson Endowed Chair in Health Services Research at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Currently Director of The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia’s Center for Outcomes Research, Dr. Silber is an authority on outcomes measurement and severity of illness adjustment. Since its inception  …

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Penn Team Finds Immune Cells Promote Food-Allergy Associated Inflammation


According to the CDC, approximately 4 to 6 percent of U.S. children under the age of 18 have food allergies. Food allergies can lead to a range of symptoms, from hives to abdominal cramps to serious, life-threating conditions like anaphylaxis. Unfortunately, there is no cure for food allergies, and the best treatment for many patients is simply to avoid certain foods. But a new study could offer h …

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CHOP Immune Therapy Trial Highlighted by Association of American Medical Colleges


On its research advocacy blog Research Means Hope, the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) recently highlighted an innovative immune therapy trial led by researchers from CHOP and Penn that led to the dramatic recovery of one young patient. Before being treated with bioengineered T cells that were designed to destroy cancer cells, the prospects for Emily Whitehead were grim: her leukem …

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Cancer Researcher, Core Technician Named Research Administration Fellows


The Office of Postdoctoral Affairs recently announced the selection of two new research administration fellows. Radhika Iyer, PhD, a research associate in the lab of pediatric cancer expert Garrett Brodeur, MD, and Christian Mercado, MS, a technician in the Nucleic Acid / Protein Research core facility, began their fellowships in early July. The Research Administration Fellowship is a part-time, u …

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Lisa Speicher, PhD, Leaves CHOP for Penn


Lisa Speicher, PhD, recently decided to leave her position at Children’s Hospital to assume an exciting new role as the Executive Director of the Office of Clinical Research at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. While at CHOP, Lisa oversaw tremendous growth in the Clinical Trials Office (CTO), for which she served as director since 2006. She also spearheaded the development of the  …

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