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Sarcoma Research Update

March 21, 2019

Kelly Bailey, MD, PhD, is a sarcoma specialist in the Division of Pediatric Oncology at UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh. Her research is focused on how the Ewing sarcoma tumor microenvironment regulates disease progression. Part of Dr. Bailey’s work includes examining the immune response to Ewing tumors. Determining why certain individuals’ cancers behave more aggressively is of primary importance for Dr. Bailey, given the fact that relapsed and refractory cases are exceptionally difficult to treat. Dr. Bailey’s early research efforts were recognized by the Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation when they awarded her a 2016 Young Investigator Grants. This three-year, $150,000 award is supporting Dr. Bailey’s research project titled ”Micro-environmental Regulators of Ewing’s Sarcoma Metastasis.”

At the 2018 American Society for Pediatric Hematology/Oncology (ASPHO) annual meeting, Dr. Bailey was invited to deliver an oral presentation on metastatic Ewing sarcoma titled “The Tumor Microenvironment and Key Molecular Pathways in Metastasis of Bone Sarcoma.” 

Also, in 2018, Dr. Bailey was awarded an Emerging Scientist Grant from the Children’s Cancer Research Fund® (CCRF) to help further her research investigating the signaling pathways that drive Ewing sarcoma cells to become more aggressive and less sensitive to chemotherapy. This $100,000 award from the CCRF is designed to support young investigators develop independent research careers.

Dr. Bailey was one of ten investigators nationally who were asked to participate in the Children’s Oncology Group New Agents for Ewing Sarcoma Task Force. The mission of this group is to find promising new agents to incorporate into future clinical trials for metastatic and relapsed Ewing sarcoma. A manuscript detailing the work of the Task Force in 2018 is currently in submission.