Workshop B – Leukemia in the Down Syndrome Population


Workshop Description:
Children with Down syndrome are at an increased risk for leukemia. Treatment of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) in children with Down syndrome poses specific challenges. This workshop will: 1) Discuss frequency and disease mechanisms of leukemia in children with Down syndrome; 2) Describe current treatment for AML and ALL in Down syndrome; and 3) Review unique psychosocial considerations for this patient population.

Kim Daniel, M.Ed., PhD
Professional Psychologist
Hematology/Oncology Division and Psychology Department
The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, ON

Dr. Kim S. Daniel received her PhD from McGill University, in psychology, and completed her pre-doctoral internship at Surrey Place Centre (SPC) in Toronto, working with individuals with differing intellectual disabilities. She completed a post-doctoral clinical fellowship at Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids), working within the Pediatric Clinical/Health Psychology and Behavioural Medicine division. Currently, Dr. Daniel is employed in differing settings. At SPC, she provides cognitive assessments and psychological interventions within the Child and Youth division. At SickKids, she provides psychotherapy working within the Haematology/Oncology division. At CBT and Associates of Toronto, she provides cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) for children, adolescents, adults, and families. At ADLER, she is an adjunct professor and teaches CBT approaches and strategies. Notably, Dr. Daniel’s main aspiration is to give back to her community whereby she is able to apply her 15+ years of clinical experiences and education in supporting individuals with severe emotional, behavioral, social, cognitive and medical challenges that negatively impact their overall health and level of functioning across differing environments. Lastly, Dr. Daniel also likes to contribute to research and currently, as joint authorship, has a book chapter under review titled: “Easing Psychological Distress throughout the Pediatric Cancer Journey.”

Johann Hitzler, MD
Division of Hematology Oncology
The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, ON
Associate Professor, Department of Pediatrics, University of Toronto
Senior Scientist, Program Developmental and Stem Cell Biology;
The Hospital for Sick Children Research Institute, Toronto, ON

Dr. Hitzler’s clinical and research interests focus on the leukemias of children with Down syndrome.
His experimental research uses mutational screens and xenograft model to determine the events that underlie the development of transient leukemia in newborns with Down syndrome and the progression to acute myeloid leukemia (AML). His clinical research focuses on how to improve treatment protocols for primary and relapsed acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) in children with Down syndrome, specifically how to decrease the risk of severe infections during chemotherapy. He is involved in the analysis of the infections experienced by children with Down syndrome while treated on current clinical trials for ALL conducted by the Children’s Oncology Group, the optimization of supportive care and the development of new treatment strategies for ALL in children with Down syndrome.

Jeffrey Taub, MD
Division Chief of Oncology,
Children’s Hospital of Michigan, Detroit, MI
Professor of Pediatrics,
Ring Screw Textron Chair in Pediatric Cancer Research,
Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, MI

Dr. Taub received his medical degree from the University of Western Ontario, and completed his internship at Victoria Hospital in London, Ontario, and a pediatric residency and Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Fellowship at Children’s Hospital of Michigan. Dr. Taub is currently the Division Chief of Oncology at Children’s Hospital of Michigan and is a Professor of Pediatrics at Wayne State University School of Medicine where he holds the Ring Screw Textron Endowed Chair in Pediatric Cancer Research. He has been the past recipient of several research awards including a Young Investigator Award from the American Society of Clinical Oncology, a Wayne State University Faculty Research Excellence Award and a Children’s Hospital of Michigan Teacher of the Year Award. His clinical expertise is in the field of leukemia with a particular focus on children with Down syndrome and leukemia. He has conducted multiple research projects related to the epidemiology and pharmacology of childhood leukemia and has published over 100 research papers, abstracts and book chapters.

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