November 15, 2011

Today’s episode features an impressive lineup for a hot topic. Host Dr. Tim Cripe warns: “If your blood isn’t boiling by the end, you weren`t listening.” Hear Tim and co-host Dr. Lionel Chow discuss pediatric cancer research funding with guests Dr. C. Patrick (Pat) Reynolds, Dr. E. Anders (Andy) Kolb, and parent Joe McDonough.

Dr. Pat Reynolds puts government spending on the number one disease killer of children in the US in perspective, comparing the tiny $200M spent on pediatric cancer research to the foreign aid budget of $22B (less than 1%). For example, $1.6B goes to Egypt alone. The COG budget is a mere $46M. The DOD budget is $700B. See his slides here. Dr. Lionel Chow mentions an enlightening fact – private donations to St. Jude exceed $600M per year, on top of the givers’ paying taxes. This is 3 times the entire NCI budget for pediatric cancer research for all institutions in the US.

Spending per Person Years Life Lost is compared for childhood cancers and adult cancers, see graph here.

Dr. C. Patrick Reynolds is Director, Cancer Center and Professor of Cell Biology & Biochemistry, Internal Medicine, and Pediatrics, School of Medicine, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, Lubbock TX. Dr. E Anders Kolb is the Director of Blood and Bone Marrow Transplantation at Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children, and Head of the Cancer Therapeutics Laboratory at Nemours Biomedical Research, Wilmington, DE. Joe McDonough is father to Andrew, and founder of The Andrew McDonough B+ (Be Positive) Foundation, raising money for families and research.

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