Keira Kilbane Cancer Discovery Fund

Established in partnership with the Huang Lab at Rainbow Babies and Children’s in Cleveland OH, our goal is to promote research in childhood leukemia.

Childhood Cancer and Funding Facts

  • Cancer is the leading cause of death by disease past infancy among US children (2/100,000).

  • About 10,000 to 12,000 cases of cancer are diagnosed in children ages 0-14, with incidence going up 0.5% each year (causes are unknown). The incidence is 15/100,000.

  • Adding adolescent and young adult population, the number of cases goes up dramatically (69,000 cases of cancer are diagnosed for adolescents and young adults ages 15-39).

  • Less than 4% of the National Institutes of Health total cancer research budget of $4.8 billion goes to fund childhood cancer research.

  • Unlike many adult cancers in which causes are known (viral infections, smoking, diet, etc.), many causes of childhood cancer are unknown and cannot be prevented.

  • Leukemia is the leading cancer diagnosis in all age groups.

  • In 1950, there were virtually no survivors of leukemia.

  • We are still using the same medications that were used in the 1950’s – they are just used in different combinations.

  • Pharmaceutical companies do not produce the medications needed to treat childhood cancer because the medications only target a small percentage of the population and are not profitable.

  • In 2014, survival rate of all leukemia is 70-80%, with some leukemia approaching 94% 5-year survival rate (standard-risk B-cell leukemia).

  • 150 cases of Infant Leukemia (diagnosed less than 365 days after birth) are diagnosed each year, with a poor prognosis of <50% survival rate and high morbidity for those who survive.

  • Children may be only 10-15% of our national population, but they are 100% of our future!!!!

Alex Huang

Alex Y. Huang, MD, PhD

Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital, Cleveland, Ohio

Huang Laboratory at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine

Discovering Immunity in Health & Disease. Finding Cures for Childhood Cancer.