The Cancer Genetics program works closely with pediatric oncologists at Children’s Health to provide cancer genetics services to pediatric patients in Dallas. We have a monthly clinic to provide genetic risk assessment consultations, testing, and follow-up care to pediatric patients with hereditary cancer syndromes. Since 2010, we have tested more than 180 pediatric patients. The majority of these patients are the children of adult patients from our Simmons and Parkland clinics. Providing both pediatric and adult cancer genetics services allows us to deliver continuity of care for patients transitioning out of the pediatric clinics to adult centers, and to ensure optimal management with no gaps in surveillance and follow-up.
In addition to our clinical endeavors at Children’s, we are also involved in various initiatives to use molecularly based targeted therapies to improve outcomes for pediatric cancer patients. For example, Dr. Ted Laetsch, a pediatric oncologist at Children’s, is working with the GAIN (Genomic Assessment Informs Novel Therapy) Consortium as a somatic tumor sequencing curation team member. The GAIN Consortium is a large multicenter effort to conduct genomics studies on pediatric cancer samples. New studies will build upon the experience from this consortium, which will assess the impact of tumor sequencing on clinical outcomes. Dr. Laetsch participates regularly in our molecular tumor board, sharing his experiences using this relatively new diagnostic tool.