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CHILDHOOD CANCERS

HOW CAN WE ACCOUNT FOR THE RAPID PROGRESS IN TREATING CHILDHOOD CANCERS? ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS

Childhood cancers are largely a success story, with the vast majority of kids either cured of their disease or in prolonged remission. Yoram Unguru, a medical ethicist at Johns Hopkins and a childhood cancer specialist, says heís identified a few factors that have helped.

UNGURU: Because childhood cancer is fortunately a rare disease, in order to make any type of substantive observation, it really forced the community to engage in cooperative group research. Parents are willing to do pretty much anything when their child is faced with a life limiting illness. I found that that played a role in integrating research and care. And one of the more interesting things I didnít expect to find was what I call permissive oversight. So in the early days of childhood cancer research more tolerant oversight of research existed and that allowed things to happen which accelerated and ultimately fortuitously, allowed advances to be made.       :37

Unguru says todayís oversight policies are much more rigorous. At Johns Hopkins, Iím Elizabeth Tracey.


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