Cancer patient donates tumors for research, leads to discovery of promising therapy

U.S. & World

(NBC) – Researchers at Indiana University School of Medicine have found a promising therapy using Tyler Trent’s cancer cells.

Trent donated several tumors for research while he was a patient at IU Health’s Riley Hospital for Children.

It has led to a combination therapy that significantly slows tumor growth in models built with Trent’s cells.

Doctor Karen Pollok describes an emerging drug combination therapy discovered by IU researchers to substantially slow tumor growth.

“For me it is a great source of comfort to think that Tyler’s life and cells are continuing to help make an impact on cancer,” said Kelly Trent, Tyler’s mom.

The very cancer that killed Tyler lives on in the laboratory at the Well Center for Pediatric Research. These are miniature tumors being grown and studied from the donation left by Tyler.”

TT2 is one of Tyler’s tumor samples.

He used his public battle to advocate for pediatric cancer research.

Tyler met the doctors doing the work on his donated tumors just weeks before the osteosarcoma took his life January 1, 2019.

“If someone had told me that I would have the privilege to go to Tyler’s home, meet him and his family, I just wouldn’t have believed it. It really has taken it up. It’s made it more real,” Dr. Pollok said.

Tyler’s legacy is leading to progress.

People have donated millions of dollars for cancer research in Tyler’s name, including approximately $180,000 for the Tyler Trent Cancer Research endowment for Riley Hospital.

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