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Pediatr Blood Cancer. 2011 Jul 1;56(7):1019-25. doi: 10.1002/pbc.22976. Epub 2011 Jan 31.

The successful integration of research and care: how pediatric oncology became the subspecialty in which research defines the standard of care.

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Division of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology, The Herman and Walter Samuelson Children's Hospital at Sinai, Baltimore, Maryland, USA.


Pediatric oncology successfully embodies the integration of patient care with medical research. Several factors may explain this phenomenon. Specifically, the study of childhood leukemia provided scientists with principles by which they could approach other forms of cancer. Multicenter, cooperative group RCTs resulted in meaningful advances. Parents' often desperate hope for a cure, combined with clinician-investigators efforts to continually improve upon treatments resulted in important improvements in children's lives. Finally, the seemingly tolerant regulatory oversight of human subjects research in the early years of childhood cancer research paradoxically helped link research with care, thus solidifying this bond for years to come.

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