Keeping up with our researchers
New role for Neglia
Dr. Joe Neglia has been named Chair of the University of Minnesota Department of Pediatrics and Pediatrician in Chief for University of Minnesota Amplatz Children’s Hospital. He will take over this role fulltime in early January.
In announcing Neglia’s appointment, Dr. Frank Cerra, senior vice president of Health Sciences at said, “Dr. Neglia is well-qualified for this position and received overwhelming support from the faculty of the department. I am very pleased that he has accepted the position and believe he will be an effective leader for the department and for the opening of the new University of Minnesota Amplatz Children’s Hospital.”
Early in his career, Dr. Neglia was one of the first research fellows whose work was funded by Children’s Cancer Research Fund. As the primary oncologist for many Children’s Cancer Research Fund kids and families, future patients will be fortunate to have a pediatric cancer advocate like Dr. Neglia to lead the department and new hospital, of which half of the rooms will be dedicated to patients receiving treatment for childhood cancer. We congratulate and wish Dr. Neglia all the best in his new role!
$2.5 million grant awarded
Children’s Cancer Research Fund co-chief medical advisor, Dr. Julie Ross, was awarded a National Cancer Institute grant of $2.5 million to investigate the causes of myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) and research why many cases progress to leukemia. This is the largest-of-its-kind study, aiming to identify environmental, lifestyle, and genetic factors that may predispose a person to MDS.
MDS involves a group of diseases of the blood and bone marrow. It’s similar to leukemia in that the bone marrow does not make enough healthy blood cells. About one-third of patients with MDS go on to develop acute myeloid leukemia.
Only about 10,000 people per year in the United States get MDS, but for unknown reasons, Minnesota has one of the highest rates of the disease. The disease is more common in men, affects predominantly older people with the average age being 75 years, and can have a poor prognosis.
Although the disease primarily affects adults, cases of MDS are also found in children. In our 2010 annual report, we feature one family in which both children were diagnosed and treated for MDS at the University of Minnesota.