Dr Michelle Henderson is a senior scientist at Sydney’s Children’s Cancer Institute and joint manager of the Molecular Diagnostics Group, which monitors therapy in children going through leukaemia treatment by using sensitive and accurate DNA-based tests.
She is excited about the potential of her work that stands to result in a more gentle and effective therapy for children at greatest risk.
Along with a team of colleagues and collaborators, Dr Henderson is investigating which sub-types of leukaemia are most likely to respond to a newly discovered drug. Findings will also determine the genetic markers in the cancers of individual children that indicate they’d be good subjects for a clinical trial. But it all relies on long-term funding.
“We have currently reached a ceiling where the chemotherapy options that work for most kids cannot be successfully used to cure the particularly aggressive cases.”