2023 CureSearch PEDS Graphic 080923 (1) 2023 PEDS


2023 PEDS


Advancing Pediatric Cancer Drug Development

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2023 PEDS Sponsors

2023 PEDS is a virtual event
Oct. 18-19, 2023

Truly a one-of-its-kind, can't-miss event! (1)

Together, experts in pediatric oncology, industry, academia and regulatory examine the dynamic nature of clinical trials for a rare population- children with cancer. 

Register now for early bird pricing!


Expert speakers | Thought-provoking topics | Collaborative discussion

Our speakers will dive deep into a variety of collaborative themes across this year's topic: Advancing Pediatric Cancer Drug Development through Pharmacokinetics, Modeling, and Improved Clinical Trial Designs

October 18, 2023

10:00 am Welcome from our Co-Chairs

Led by Brenda Weigel, MD, Director of the Division of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology at University of Minnesota; Jeffrey Skolnik, MD, Senior Vice President of Clinical Development at Inovio Pharmaceuticals

Key Concepts - Chaired by Yuki Otani, MD, PhD, Pediatric Pulmonologist and Advisor, Global PK/PD and Pharmacometrics at Eli Lilly and Company

10:15 am Basic Concepts and Terminology of Pharmacokinetics 

Speaker: Izna Ali, PharmD, PhD, Senior Clinical Pharmacokineticist at Abbvie 

10:45 am How Pharmacokinetics can Enhance the Design of Your Clinical Trial 

Speaker: Ryan Jarret, PhD, Advisor, Global PK/PD & Pharmacometrics at Eli Lilly and Company 


11:15 am Dose-Response Relationship: Step from Animals to Humans Flawed?  

Speaker: Jingqi Gong, Ph.D., Associate Director of Quantitative Systems Pharmacology at GSK

11:45 – 12:30 pm Break for lunch  

Clinical Session - Chaired by Jennifer Foster MD, MPH, Assoc. Prof. of Pediatrics-Oncology at Baylor College of Medicine 

12:30 pm What are critical elements and practical expectations for the FDA?  

Speaker: Amy Barone, MD, Cross-Disciplinary Team Leader, Division of Oncology, Office of New Drugs, U.S. Food and Drug Administration  

1:30 pm Case Study: How to Bring Dabrafenib + Trametinib to the Clinic for Using Data? 

Speaker: Dr. Jordan Hansford, Program Leader, Paediatric Neuro-Oncology Research at South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI)

2:30 pm Trial Design: Operationalize a Trial in the Pediatric Population 

Speaker: Julie Maher, Senior Director of Rare Disease, Advanced Therapeutics, and Pediatrics Team at Fortrea

3:30 pm Panel Discussion 

4:00 – 4:30 pm Wrap-Up with Co-Chairs, Brenda Weigel, MD and Jeffrey Skolnik, MD

October 19, 2023

10:00 am Opening remarks from our Co-Chairs

Led by Brenda Weigel, MD, Director of the Division of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology at University of Minnesota; Jeffrey Skolnik, MD, Senior Vice President of Clinical Development at Inovio Pharmaceuticals

Current State - Chaired by Elizabeth Fox, MD, Senior Vice President of Clinical Trials Research at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital 

10:15 am Keynote: Data with a Focus on Pharmacokinetics and Clinical Trials

Speaker: Frank M. Balis, MD, Director of Cancer Clinical Research at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia Research Institute

11:00 am Are Adults Just Big Kids? Optimizing Pediatric Drug Exposure Based on Adult Experience

Speaker: Michael Craig Cox, PharmD, MHSc, BCOP, Senior Vice President, Head of Early Development at Circle Pharma

11:30 am Breakout Sessions – Seriously, How Can We Solve Barriers?

Group 1 led by: Kristine Crews, PharmD, BCPS, Clinical Pharmacogenomics Residency Director at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital

Group 2 led by: Rachel Kudgus, PhD, Director of Clinical Pharmacology at Allucent

12 - 12:30 pm Break for lunch

Future State - Chaired by Clinton Stewart, PharmD, Member, Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital

12:30 pm Advanced Modeling Techniques Enhance Drug Development for Childhood Cancer

Speaker: Don Mager, Professor and Chair of the Dept of Pharmaceutical Sciences, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences at University of Buffalo

1:30 pm Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning: The New Frontier of Drug Development and Cancer Research

Speaker: Qi Liu, PhD, Associate Director for Innovation & Partnership at Office of Clinical Pharmacology, U.S. Food and Drug Administration

2:30 pm Revitalizing Cancer Trials Post-Pandemic – Time for Reform

Speaker: James Spicer, professor of experimental cancer medicine at King's College London and a consultant in medical oncology

3:30 pm Panel Discussion

4:00 – 4:30 pm Closing Notes with Co-Chairs, Brenda Weigel, MD and Jeffrey Skolnik, MD

The impact of PEDS

Critical stakeholder collaboration

CureSearch PEDS serves as a synergistic platform for driving critical stakeholder collaborations to accelerate the pace of pediatric drug development. This annual symposium brings together leaders from all areas of the global pediatric cancer ecosystem to drive the collaborations necessary to accelerate and drive real, measurable change in children’s cancer research. Experts in the field convene to provide real-world examples and solutions relating to clinical trial design, optimization and conduct.

Symposium Co-Chairs

Jeffrey Skolnik, MD

Jeffrey Skolnik, MD
Vice President, Clinical Development
Inovio Pharmaceuticals Inc.

Brenda Weigel

Brenda Weigel, MD
Director of the Division of Pediatric Hematology and Oncology
University of Minnesota's Masonic Cancer Center

Working Group Members

Brenda Weigel, MD (Chair), University of Minnesota

Jeffrey Skolnik, PhD (Chair), Inovio Pharmaceuticals

Lou Stancato, PhD, Eli Lilly and Company

Beth Fox, MD, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital

Clinton Stewart, PharmD, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital

Jeff Barrett, PhD, Aridhia

Peter Adamson, MD, Sanofi

Daniel Morgenstern, MD, Hospital for Sick Children

Diana Merino, PhD, AstraZeneca


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2023 PEDS-CureSearch-Who is attending?


"There are lots of moving parts to PIPs/PSPs but with the right knowledge and support, that can be done in a way that supports drug development in pediatric oncology."

“The pediatric oncology community (academia, industry, regulatory, advocacy) is made up of a very special set of dedicated experts working diligently to improve pediatric drug development.”

“There are many people working very hard to figure out how to advance drugs for children. On the other hand, companies aren't really geared up for the process yet.”

“This was truly a one-of-a-kind effort that's invaluable to our community!”

“Collaboration/partnership/Communication. It's not anything revelatory, but the sessions reinforced the importance of these concepts across all of Peds Oncology development. The better and more efficient that industry, regulators and academia can be at working together, the faster that new and better drugs will become available for pediatric cancer patients.”

“I really wanted to thank the organizers for allowing for enough time for substantive discussions. The Q&A sessions were brilliant.”

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