Combination Cancer Therapy   

Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital Studies New Combination Therapy to Treat Rare, Aggressive Cancer of the Central Nervous System

Hospital is the only site in New Jersey participating in international clinical trial

Combination Cancer Therapy

Derek Hanson, M.D., division chief of Pediatric Neuro-Oncology at Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital, is the lead investigator for an international clinical trial studying a new combination therapy in children and young adults with diffuse midline glioma (DMG). This rare, aggressive tumor occurs in the brain or spinal cord.

The trial, titled “PNOC022: Combination Therapy for the Treatment of Diffuse Midline Gliomas,” aims to determine if the combination of a medication called ONC201 with drugs panobinostat or paxalisib is an effective treatment for diffuse midline gliomas. ONC201, panobinostat and paxalisib are enzyme inhibitors that may block some of the enzymes that fuel tumor growth.

Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital is the only hospital in New Jersey that is offering this clinical trial through its participation in the Pacific Pediatric Neuro-Oncology Consortium (PNOC). PNOC is an international consortium with centers in the United States, Europe, Asia and Australia. Membership in the consortium gives Hackensack Meridian Children’s Health access to leading-edge international neuro-oncology studies.

“DMGs are rare, aggressive tumors — and despite ongoing research, there are still few effective treatment options,” said Dr. Hanson. “This trial will enroll patients ranging from age 2 to 39 at different stages of their disease, including patients who are newly diagnosed, who have completed radiation therapy, and who are experiencing progression.”

“Through our participation in PNOC, our team provides young patients with access to innovative neuro-oncology clinical trials right here in New Jersey,” said Alfred Gillio, M.D., director of the Children’s Cancer Institute at Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital. “We are proud to be a member of PNOC and fully support the consortium’s mission of providing new hope for children and families through clinical research.”

Learn more about our advancements in pediatric oncology at Hackensack Meridian Children’s Health.

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