Skip to main content

Imagine being told that your two-year-old child has six months to live.

That was the devastating news Matthew’s parents received when he was diagnosed with a high-grade brain stem glioma that was growing at an alarming rate. At the time, there were no chemotherapies for this tumor and very little hope.

Thankfully, a biopsy of his tumor revealed a biomarker for which there was a chemotherapy in clinical trial that was showing very positive results. This new treatment stabilized Matthew’s tumor. Now, seven years later, he is a joyful 10-year-old who loves playing with trains and has a bright future ahead. His mother, Dawn, said:

“Research led to the clinical trial that saved his life. Matthew is a beautiful example that research works!”

You can help ensure that every child diagnosed with cancer has the opportunity to thrive like Matthew. Your gift to CURE will fund critical research that will create hope in the face of nearly impossible odds.

Please give today to bring us one step closer to a world without childhood cancer.


What Is Precision Medicine?

Every child is unique. Thanks to your support, their cancer treatments can be too.

Our focus on advancing the use of precision medicine to treat children with cancer launched in 2017 and has been our highest priority since then, with a total investment of $14 million.

An easy way to understand precision medicine is to think of it as “personalized medicine.” Although we know that every child is unique, today’s childhood cancer treatment does not take into account the genetic differences of each child. Rather, a child’s cancer is treated according to disease type. But often, children with the same type of cancer respond differently to the same treatment. A chemotherapy which is effective for some may fail altogether for others because of the genetic differences at play. That is where personalized medicine comes in.

The vision of precision medicine is to provide personalized, non-toxic, and curative therapy for all children with cancer by genetically mapping a child’s tumor and targeting the problem mutations. To achieve this aim, genetic testing seeks to identify targets that allow doctors to create individualized treatments to destroy the mutated cells.

Since our focus on precision medicine began, 85% of the children who received genetic mapping with CURE’s funding found their treatments impacted by the information obtained. But the impact of precision medicine goes well beyond the child’s cancer treatment. Genetic testing can change a diagnosis or reveal a genetic predisposition to cancer that can affect a family for generations.