The Smasherson Team had the privilege to attend the research labs at Georgia Tech with Tobey MacDonald, Director and Aflac Chair Pediatric Neuro Oncology Program at CHOA and importantly Emerson’s doctor.  Dr. MacDonald is the recipient of Smasherson’s Research Dollars. Dr. MacDonald partners with the brilliant Fatih Sarioglu, Ph.D., who is a GA Tech faculty member and leads several research labs.  Together their labs share research to determine how brain tumor cells behave and how nanotechnology can impact this behavior.  It was inspiring to see how their minds work to develop this important research.

They are currently studying circulating tumor cells (also known as CTCs) specifically for brain tumors.  Cluster Wells technology can identify and analyze these CTCs to help evaluate how a patient is responding to their treatment protocol.  This technology may be used as an adjunct to MRI testing to evaluate how a patient’s cells are reacting.  The funding Smasherson provides allows them to take this technology into larger clinical trials thus impacting future treatment protocols.

Upon conclusion of the field trip to GA Tech, the Smasherson team left with sincere appreciation for doctors like Dr. MacDonald and Dr. Sarioglu whose talents and unrelenting passion to improve outcomes for children with brain tumors are unsurpassed.  The team witnessed first hand our investment at work,  their commitment to Smash Pediatric Brain Cancer and we could not be more grateful.