Baylor Advancing Sequencing in Childhood Cancer Care (BASIC3)
A National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) Clinical Sequencing Exploratory Research project
The goal of this exploratory clinical sequencing project is to integrate CLIA-certified germline and tumor exome sequencing information generated by the Whole Genome Laboratory into the care of childhood cancer patients with high-risk solid tumors and brain tumors at the Texas Children’s Cancer Center. Given the clinical nature of the project the dual principal investigators will be Drs. Donald W. Parsons and Sharon E. Plon, board-certified pediatric oncologist and medical geneticist, respectively. We will assess the impact of whole exome sequence data reported by a novel web-based platform with links to existing data for each variant reported and presented through a graphical display that will facilitate physician disclosure of complex data to parents. We will evaluate physician-parent communication and clinical decision-making in the context of two clinical questions
- How does the availability of tumor whole exome sequence data affect physician recommendations regarding enrollment on specific clinical trials and the treatment plans chosen in the scenario of tumor recurrence?
- How does the availability of germline whole exome sequence data affect cancer surveillance for patients and genetic testing and cancer surveillance for family members? Quantitative analysis of physician communication in disclosure of genome-scale data will be performed.
Parental understanding and preferences for receiving genome scale data will be assessed. Ethical issues related to the appropriate use and reporting of whole exome data including possible incidental findings in a pediatric setting will be addressed. Baylor College of Medicine is ideally suited to conduct this study with the longstanding clinical oncology and cancer genetics practices, extensive expertise in genomics through the Human Genome Sequencing Center, the largest academic CLIA-certified molecular diagnostic laboratory in the United States and a track record of scholarship in ethical and social implications of genomics in the Center for Medical Ethics and Health Policy and physician-patient/parent communication in the Division of Health Outcome Services.
To read about current outcomes and measures, as well as present results, see the publication Diagnostic Yield of Clinical Tumor and Germline Whole-Exome Sequencing for Children With Solid Tumor (PubMed).
Learn more about the NHGRI Clinical Sequencing Exploratory Research (CSER)
Texas Children’s Cancer Center is part of a Dream Team of childhood cancer researchers that will focus on melding the fields of genomics and immunotherapy to advance treatment for pediatric cancer.
The SU2C-St. Baldrick’s Pediatric Dream Team Translational Cancer Research Project will provide a total of $14.5 million over four years, including $3.3 million to BCM.
The Dream Team will work collaboratively to perform new analyses on childhood cancer genomes as well as normal childhood tissues to determine which molecules are on the surface of cancer cells but not normal cells. They will then create new immunotherapeutic drugs and approaches based on these discoveries.
The team will also develop a clinical trials consortium to test the new immunotherapeutic in children.
Parsons will head the genomics arm of the project and Dr. Nabil Ahmed will lead the immunotherapy side at the Center for Cell and Gene Therapy. Other dream team members include Drs. Malcolm Brenner, Ching Lau, Christopher Man, Xiao-Nan Li, David Wheeler, Dolores López-Terrada, Ricardo Flores, Angshumoy Roy, Matthew Baker, and Meenakshi Hegde.