Paediatric Cancer Treatment

Research Program

Paediatric Cancer

Where we are

SJD Barcelona Children's Hospital

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Paediatric cancer affects over 1000 children in Spain each year, 80% of whom survive more than 5 years after treatment. There are, however, still some paediatric cancers that are incurable.

Our work focuses on experimentally addressing this urgent clinical need in patients with the worst prognosis. We carry out laboratory (preclinical) projects based on small tumour samples (biopsies) from these patients which we use to create laboratory models that are then used in experimental studies for new treatments. These new treatments are developed by our research group and/or our collaborators.

Thanks to these preclinical research projects, we are currently conducting phase 1 clinical trials in the paediatric population with retinal and brain cancer.

Our research on retinoblastoma (retinal cancer) virotherapy is well known and is already being applied in children with promising results. We were extremely excited to receive the Schweisguth Prize from SIOP (Société Internationale d'Oncologie Pédiatrique) and the Vanguàrdia Science Award for this work.

Our scientific output is diverse. The results of our studies have been published in various prestigious journals in the fields of translational medicine, pharmaceutical sciences and bioengineering (e.g., Science Translational Medicine, Biomaterials, Journal of Controlled Release, Advanced Healthcare Materials) and we have participated in publications in the most prestigious scientific sources (Science, Nature, Nature Medicine, Nature Genetics, Cancer Cell, JEM, Nature Communications, Cancer Research, Clinical Cancer Research).

The main objectives of our research programme are:

1. To establish a platform for preclinical paediatric solid tumour models.

2. To conduct preclinical translational research on the efficacy of new therapeutic candidates.

3. To develop new drug delivery systems tailored to our patients.

4. To characterise how medicines are distributed in the body in order to fully understand their therapeutic effect

Research lines

  1. Diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG) and cerebral gliomatosis: pharmacological therapy and immunotherapy.
  2. Retinoblastoma: advanced therapy with oncolytic adenoviruses.
  3. Extracranial solid tumours: selective therapies with new drug delivery systems.
  4. Solid tumours with poor prognosis in relapse: precision therapies.
  5. Blood-brain barrier: possible pharmacological strategies to cross it.

Scientific objectives

  1. To develop pharmacological treatments for DIPG, cerebral gliomatosis and other paediatric brain tumours with poor prognosis.
  2. To develop drug delivery systems in paediatric oncology, with a better profile of tumour selectivity, greater efficacy and lower toxicity.
  3. To develop innovative pharmacological treatments for extracranial solid paediatric tumours such as Ewing's sarcoma, rhabdomyosarcoma, osteosarcoma and neuroblastoma.
  4. To develop treatments for retinoblastoma based on the combination of oncolytic adenoviruses and chemotherapy.
  5. To develop immunotherapy treatments for DIPG and other brain tumours.

Area/Field of expertise

We have expertise in the following areas:

  1. Development of cell models and patient-derived xenografts (PDX) of paediatric solid tumours (retinoblastoma, neuroblastoma, DIPG, high-grade gliomas, medulloblastoma, AT-RT, rhabdomyosarcoma, Ewing's sarcoma, osteosarcoma, Wilms' tumour, germ cell tumours, malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumours) from biobank samples.
  2. Efficacy tests of anticancer agents used to treat paediatric solid tumours.
  3. Pharmacokinetic assays of anticancer agents in the central nervous system and in paediatric solid tumours.
  4. Biological sampling by microdialysis and analysis by high-resolution liquid chromatography (HPLC).
  5. Development of biopolymer drug delivery systems for paediatric solid tumours.

Group members

Last Publications

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Projects

Project name:
Desenvolupament preclínic del fàrmac G2B-001 i aplicació en el tractament de tumors sòlids pediàtrics
Leader
Angel Montero Carcaboso
Funding entities:
Agaur - Agència de Gestió d'Ajuts Universitaris i de Recerca
Code
2021 DI 008
Starting - finishing date:
2021 - 2024
Project name:
Contrato predoctoral de formación en investigación en salud_Beneficiario: Helena Castillo
Leader
Angel Montero Carcaboso
Funding entities:
Instituto de Salud Carlos III (ISCIII)
Code
FI19/00138
Starting - finishing date:
2020 - 2023
Project name:
Inhibition of the PI3K/Akt pathway in pediatric high grade and diffuse intrinsic pontine gliomas (pHGG/DIPG)
Leader
Angel Montero Carcaboso
Funding entities:
Fundació La Marató de TV3
Code
201927-30
Starting - finishing date:
2020 - 2023
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Theses

  • Estudio de la toxicidad local y sistémica de matrices de nanofibras cargadas con SN-38 en rata Wistar.
    Author
    Manzanares Quintela, Alejandro
    Institution
    UNIVERSIDAD DE BARCELONA
    19/09/2020
  • New therapeutic approaches in diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG)
    Author
    Gene Olaciregui, Nagore
    Institution
    UNIVERSIDAD DE BARCELONA
    19/09/2019
  • Farmacocinètica i eficàcia preclínica de teràpies innovadores pel retinoblastoma refractari
    Author
    Pascual Pastó, Guillem
    Institution
    UNIVERSIDAD DE BARCELONA
    15/06/2018
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