Dr. Jay Sarthy: 'We are seeking to educate and enlighten SCRI’s stakeholders.'
Dr. Jay Sarthy had three objectives for the one-day seminar, “Conquering Chromatin in Childhood Cancers,” he hosted June 5 at the Seattle Children’s Research Institute: Convene local and national experts; highlight research conducted at the institute’s Ben Towne Center for Childhood Cancer Research; and have fun.
It appears he accomplished all three.
“I’ve heard from several colleagues around the nation asking, ‘What happened at your conference in Seattle? Sounds like you laughed as much as you learned,’” said Sarthy, a clinician and researcher at Seattle Children’s. “Indeed, the symposium’s presenters and attendees laughed a great deal during the day, while gaining new insights on childhood cancers.”
Those insights came from a wide range of individuals from Seattle Children’s Research Institute, the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center, and the University of Washington, as well as Stanford University, MIT, and the Children’s Cancer Research Institute in Vienna. Dr. Jonathan Licht, director of the University of Florida Health Cancer Center, delivered the keynote address.
The speakers addressed a variety of research projects at two plenary sessions, “Profiling Cancer Epigenomes” and “Targeting Chromatin in Pediatric Cancers.”
They covered different areas of their work, but all within the broad concept of: “New therapies targeting chromatin biology are now in clinical trials for many childhood malignancies. While results have been encouraging for some diseases, a better understanding of cancer epigenetics is needed to deploy these agents more effectively.”
Sarthy noted the institute’s Ben Towne Center for Childhood Cancer Research is “in a new stage of development and we are seeking to educate and enlighten SCRI’s stakeholders.”
The center will soon begin hosting monthly events with principal investigators presenting on new research findings. In addition, discussions “are underway” for hosting an annual symposium.
“Our annual events won’t all be on chromatin,” he said. “We may be looking at immunotherapy, brain tumors, or other topics related to childhood cancer. Stay tuned.”