We can make progress in childhood cancer, but it will be rethinking a number of factors:
* Childhood cancers are ENTIRELY DIFFERENT diseases than adult cancer, even when they have the same name (e.g. Leukemia).
* Drugs that “work” for adult cancers do not necessarily treat kids the same way.
* Children always get the hand-me-downs as most funding goes to find cures for ADULT cancers. The philosophy is, “kids are just little people, so just give them less of the same drugs.” That simply doesn’t work.
* For every dollar raised by organizations such as the American Cancer Society only a fraction of a penny goes to fund cures for childhood cancers.
* In the past 20 years only two drugs have been introduced to help save kids’ lives.
Enough is enough.
Recent scientific advances have uncovered much of the molecular and genetic makeup of childhood cancers, making it possible to develop therapies directly targeted at cancer cells and therefore less toxic to children’s developing bodies. Yet progress in pediatric cancer treatment has stagnated because, as a report from the National Academy of Sciences argued, there is a “near absence” of research into pediatric cancer drugs. The Food and Drug Administration has approved only two drugs specifically for pediatric cancer over the past 20 years.