Center for Children's Cancer Research


Breakthroughs in childhood cancer research and treatment over the last three decades have led to a cure rate of more than 70% for some types of children’s cancers. The HCI Center for Children's Cancer Research continually aims to improve the cure rate for all childhood cancers by developing superior treatments through scientific research.

To advance cancer treatment, it is necessary to think on the cellular level—where cancer begins. HCI Center for Children's Cancer Research researchers focus on understanding the “genetic blueprint” of a cancer cell, working to identify what goes wrong in cells to cause different types of cancer.

By understanding more about how cancer cells function, researchers hope to correct defects by altering, interrupting, or inactivating them. This type of research could lead to new anticancer drugs designed specifically to kill cancer cells without harming healthy tissue in the body.

Educating Future Physician-Scientists

The HCI Center for Children's Cancer Research helps educate the next generation of childhood cancer physician-scientists. Trainees work alongside nationally renowned experts in clinics at Primary Children’s Medical Center and in research labs at Huntsman Cancer Institute and may include.

  • graduate students
  • medical and surgical residents
  • postdoctoral fellows

These trainees view research with a clinical eye, which leads to the latest discoveries and the newest ideas.

National Research and Clinical Trials

Research requires a lot of information to accurately measure results and develop new treatments. Because children’s cancers are relatively rare, treatment outcomes are collected from institutions across the country through the Children’s Oncology Group (COG). The HCI Center for Children's Cancer Research is one of the top ten centers in the country to submit clinical research findings to the COG.

The COG also organizes clinical trials at the national level. Clinical trials are closely monitored studies of new treatments given to cancer patients; patients who participate in a clinical trial are among the first to receive these promising new treatments before they are widely available.

The HCI Center for Children's Cancer Research provides access to a number of clinical trials for those who are interested. Please ask the doctor for more information.