Dr. Kaplan on Treating Solid Tumors in Pediatric Patients

Rosandra N. Kaplan, MD
Published: Thursday, Apr 19, 2018



Rosandra N. Kaplan, MD, investigator, Pediatric Oncology Branch, Head, Tumor Microenvironment Section, National Cancer Institute, discusses the treatment of pediatric patients with solid tumors.

Although osteosarcoma, Ewing sarcoma, and rhabdomyosarcoma are rare malignancies in the general cancer community, they are common in pediatric patients. Solid tumors are especially hard to treat in pediatric patients, as they are aggressive, Kaplan says. Additionally, these tumors often metastasize and can be locally recurrent.

Current treatments for these solid tumors often fail, so investigators are developing new therapies, such as immunotherapy, which look promising, Kaplan says. Recently, a trial with chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cells targeting the GD2 antigen—which is a receptor on osteosarcoma and neuroblastoma—was deemed safe, but not yet effective. Kaplan says that investigators are interested in creating a second-generation CAR T cell to better target GD2.


Rosandra N. Kaplan, MD, investigator, Pediatric Oncology Branch, Head, Tumor Microenvironment Section, National Cancer Institute, discusses the treatment of pediatric patients with solid tumors.

Although osteosarcoma, Ewing sarcoma, and rhabdomyosarcoma are rare malignancies in the general cancer community, they are common in pediatric patients. Solid tumors are especially hard to treat in pediatric patients, as they are aggressive, Kaplan says. Additionally, these tumors often metastasize and can be locally recurrent.

Current treatments for these solid tumors often fail, so investigators are developing new therapies, such as immunotherapy, which look promising, Kaplan says. Recently, a trial with chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cells targeting the GD2 antigen—which is a receptor on osteosarcoma and neuroblastoma—was deemed safe, but not yet effective. Kaplan says that investigators are interested in creating a second-generation CAR T cell to better target GD2.

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