Here are the grant recipients of Neuroblastoma Australia. Check out their current research projects here.

Dr Toby Trahair

Conjoint Lecturer in the School of Women’s & Children’s Health, Faculty of Medicine, UNSW. He has appointments as a staff specialist in paediatric haematology and oncology at the Kids Cancer Centre, Sydney Children’s Hospital and a Clinical Research Fellow at the Children’s Cancer Institute.

Dr Toby Trahair and Dr Jamie Fletcher are currently leading two projects supported by Neuroblastoma Australia:

  • Characterisation of high-risk neuroblastoma models to support translational research
  • Optimisation of high-risk neuroblastoma model development

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Dr Jamie Fletcher 

Project Leader, The Children’s Cancer Institute, Randwick

Dr Jamie Fletcher and Dr Toby Trahair, are currently leading two projects supported by Neuroblastoma Australia:

  • Characterisation of high-risk neuroblastoma models to support translational research
  • Optimisation of high-risk neuroblastoma model development


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Dr David Ziegler

Senior researcher at the Children’s Cancer Institute, Randwick and Head of Clinical trials at the Kids Cancer Centre, Sydney Children’s Hospital (Randwick).

Dr Ziegler will be running the CBL137 single agent clinical trials for children at leading children’s cancer centres in the United States and at Sydney Children’s Hospital, Randwick, conducted through the US-based Children’s Oncology Group (COG), the largest children’s cancer study group in the world. This is the first time that a COG trial of this sort would be made available to Australian children. 

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Professor Glenn Marshall

Senior Oncologist, Kids Cancer Centre, Sydney Children’s Hospital, Randwick Head of Translational Research and Molecular Carcinogenesis Program, Children’s Cancer InstitutePhoto of Professor Glen Marshall

Neuroblastoma Australia has funding the pre-clinical research for CBL137 in combination with other targeted therapies at the Children’s Cancer Institute, Randwick through groups led by Professors Michelle Haber, Murray Norris and Glenn Marshall.

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Professor Rod Hicks

 

Professor of Medicine and Radiology at the University of Melbourne and Director of the Centre for Cancer Imaging at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre in Melbourne, Australia.Photo of Professor Rob Hicks

Dr Hicks is currently leading a project which aims to generate a more faithful model of NMYC driven neuroblastoma for therapeutic testing (by transfecting tumour cells arising from MYCN mice with a key receptor) to evaluate the efficacy of radionuclide therapy alone and in combination with other therapies.

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Dr Christina Signorelli

Post-Doctoral Research Fellow with the Behavioural Sciences Unit, School of Women’s and Children’s Health at UNSW Sydney and the Sydney Children’s Hospital. 

Dr Signorelli received a grant from Neuroblastoma Australia in 2019 for her project Improving the long-term health of Australian childhood cancer survivors. This study will be the first Australian database recording long term effects of childhood cancer treatments on survivors. 

Dr Signorelli has been a researcher at the Behavioural Sciences Unit, Kids Cancer Centre, for over five years and has been involved in a large body of work examining Australian childhood cancer survivors’ physical and mental health. She has been developing a model of care to reduce survivors’ risk of chronic health problems and the natural next step was to develop a national childhood cancer database, to investigate the long-term health risks associated with cancer and its treatments. 

‘Ultimately, the wealth of information collected in this database will be used to help us create resources and interventions to manage the impact of treatment-related conditions in survivors, and inform future treatment protocols to prevent some of these conditions altogether.’ Dr Christina Signorelli

In addition to Dr Christina Signorelli, this study will also be led by Prof Claire Wakefield and Prof Richard Cohn at the Kids Cancer Centre, located within Sydney Children’s Hospital and UNSW Sydney.

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Professor Michelle Haber

Executive Director, The Children’s Cancer Institute, RandwickPhoto of Professor Michelle Habar

Neuroblastoma Australia has funding the pre-clinical research for CBL137 in combination with other targeted therapies at the Children’s Cancer Institute, Randwick through groups led by Professors Michelle Haber, Murray Norris and Glenn Marshall.

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Professor Murray Norris 

Deputy Director, The Children’s Cancer InstitutePhoto of Professor Murray Norris

Neuroblastoma Australia has funding the pre-clinical research for CBL137 in combination with other targeted therapies at the Children’s Cancer Institute, Randwick through groups led by Professors Michelle Haber, Murray Norris and Glenn Marshall.

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Dr Tao Liu

Associate Professor UNSW and Team Leader at the Children’s Cancer Institute, Randwick.Photo of Associate Professor Tao Liu

Neuroblastoma Australia and the Cancer Council NSW supported a project called “The critical role of the long intergenic noncoding RNA MALAT1 in Neuroblastoma” during which Dr Liu’s team uncovered the possibility of using MALAT1 as a new and effective target for neuroblastoma treatment. This means there is an opportunity to create new drugs that directly inhibit the activity of MALAT1 to stop neuroblastomas from spreading.

Going forward, Dr Liu and his team will work on developing stable MALAT1-blocking compounds. If these blockers are successful in the lab, this could lay the foundation to start clinical trials testing this treatment with neuroblastoma patients.

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