Childhood Cancer

You are here

Physical Properties of Drug-Resistant Leukemia Cells

Institution: 
Children's Hospital Los Angeles
Researcher(s): 
Yong-mi Kim, MD/PhD
Grant Type: 
Innovation Grants
Year Awarded: 
2018
Type of Childhood Cancer: 
Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL)
Project Description: 

Background
Drug resistance remains a major issue in the successful treatment of acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). Physical changes have been described mostly in solid tumors, as aggressive tumors are softer than less aggressive ones. This characteristic allows them to spread in the patient’s body. In this application, we propose to analyze their physical properties, an unstudied aspect of drug-resistant leukemia cells. Thus far, we have discovered that drug-resistant leukemia cells have greater deformability than other leukemia cells that respond to chemotherapy. 

Project Goal
In this project, we seek to measure the elasticity of drug-resistant leukemia cells and also break the increased deformability with a novel therapy targeting the structures that impact elasticity. Our efforts will potentially lay the groundwork for a new direction of research, diagnosis and therapy in the field of hematology and drug resistance.

Co-funded by: 
Cure4Cam Childhood Cancer Foundation