St. Jude researcher discusses life-saving work done at hospital, shared around the world

Published: Jul. 29, 2020 at 8:19 AM EDT
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(WWBT) - Research done at St. Jude Children’s Hospital is used around the globe for free., and it’s part of the St. Jude mission to help kids, without charging families.

That’s what makes supporting the work by its research team valuable for everyone.

Dr. Myron Evans is surrounded by the kids he works to help every day at St. Jude.

“You’re on the finding cures side. You’re doing the very important work – and the research. Do you feel the gravity of that? And the significance of that?” NBC12′s Sarah Bloom asked.

“Yeah, I do. And I think again, part of that is because you see the kids all the time so you know exactly what you’re doing. So I’m up in the lab pretty much 24-7,” said Dr. Evans. “Not playing with liquid and moving things around. Sometimes that can get a little stifling in other places, but here when I go to the cafeteria, I see the same kids that have the disease that I work on, and I get to see exactly how well they’re doing. And how the impact of what I’m doing over in the lab effects what they get over in the clinic.”

Dr. Evans conducts research on one of the toughest things in medicine: brain tumors.

“I work on a particularly rare form of brain tumor called medulloblastoma,” said Evans. “And so the form of this subgroup that we work on has no particular treatment or cure right now. We’re still trying to understand exactly what it is and what are the best treatment options for it. A lot of what I do in the lab is try to figure out - what is this particular tumor? Why do kids have this particular one? Why are they so different from kids who have a slightly different tumor in the same place and why don’t these treatment options work for them? And so we can come up with the best treatments,” he said.

The overall survival rate of that tumor is really low right now, which is why Dr. Evans is working to get answers.

“What we’re trying to understand is why don’t those patients fare well in the therapy?” said Dr. Evans. “Should we give them something different? Do we need to give them different combinations of things that we already tried? And what’s going to be the best for those patients that way we can force the survival rate up to - up in the 90 percent. And all the way up to 100%.”

It’s a lot of science but we all know that science saves kids and saves families the grief of losing a child to cancer or other diseases. It all starts with research done by doctors like Evans.

The money you spend on a chance to win the Dream Home goes to St. Jude and is used to support research that saves the lives of kids around the world. For more information on how to get your ticket, CLICK HERE.

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