ISF Rare & Solid Tumor Program

Since the inception of ISF, we have partnered with Atrium Health Levine Children’s Hospital. We have funded several clinical trials and developmental therapeutics, as well as funded a first in class MIBG therapy suite, one of 20 in the country. This is when the idea for the Isabella Santos Rare & Solid Tumor Program was born, a vision for international and national destination healthcare for children with solid tumors, brain cancers, and rare cancers.

“This program is giving families answers. Something we lost for my daughter Isabella. Real research and real treatments happening right here in Charlotte.” -Erin Santos, ISF Executive Director

Pictured: Dr. Sholler & Dr. Oesterheld, Levine Children’s

“Most pediatric cancer research is funded through philanthropy. Pediatric cancer is rare, and so the amount of money government-wise and grant-wise for pediatric cancer research is very, very limited. With philanthropies [like ISF], it’s incredible how they can jumpstart funding and research…and this enables us to open trials quickly and reach children immediately.”

Pictured: Dr. Sholler & Lillie, neuroblastoma

The ISF Rare & Solid Tumor program was initiated in July 2020 with the arrival of a world-renowned cancer researcher, Dr. Giselle Sholler. This program oversees care for all solid tumors, rare tumors, MIBG therapy, and all related clinical and scientific research at the hospital. Our goal is to help Levine Children’s Hospital provide world-class comprehensive care, access to the latest therapies and clinical trials, and extraordinary patient experience for all children and families with rare or solid tumors.

Since July 2020, the solid tumor patient volume has doubled at Levine Children’s, with patients from 20 countries coming to Charlotte. Dr. Sholler successfully opened her pediatric cancer research lab by the end of 2020 with break-through clinical trials on the horizon. Research is now right here in Charlotte.

The ISF Rare & Solid Tumors Team will focus on:

  • Neuroblastoma: cancer found in immature nerve cells, mainly affecting young children and infants
  • Osteosarcoma: most common type of bone cancer in children
  • Ewing Sarcoma: type of cancer found in bones or soft tissue, often found in children/young adults ages 5-20
  • Rhabdomyosarcoma: type of cancer in which malignant cells form in muscle tissue
  • Wilm’s Tumor: type of childhood cancer found in the cells of the kidney
  • Hepatoblastoma: a rare childhood cancer found in the liver
  • Adrenal cortical carcinoma: a rare childhood cancer found in the adrenal gland
  • Soft Tissue Sarcoma: a rare cancer that begins in soft tissue
  • Desmond Tumor: a tumor that develops in the fibrous tissue
  • Desmoplastic Small Round Blue Cell: a rare cancer usually found in the abdomen or pelvis

Our partnership with Levine Children’s Hospital will allow us to continue the legacy Isabella left. To help other children Beat, Grow, Live. To tell their stories, just like we have told Isabella’s. These children are real. They are fighting. They are in need. And we vow to help them.

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