Medical student Brittany Russell awarded POST grant to study in Capitini Lab

Congratulations to Brittany Russell, a medical student at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, and her mentor, Christian Capitini, MD, associate professor, Hematology, Oncology and Bone Marrow Transplant, who were recently awarded a $5,000 Pediatric Oncology Student Training (POST) grant from Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation. In their project, titled “IL 15/TGF-beta trap fusokine for treatment of pediatric sarcomas,” they plan to test a molecule that modulates natural killer cells and directs the immune system to attack pediatric sarcomas. The project, which will take place this summer, hypothesizes that pediatric sarcomas such as rhabdomyosarcoma and osteosarcoma can be cured in mice models with post-transplant administration of the molecule FIST15 through activation of donor-derived natural killer cells and reduction in serum TGFβ. This could have positive implications for children living with a very difficult-to-treat and high-mortality form of pediatric cancer.