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Australian first genomic sequencing and tumour library for young people with cancer launched at PA Hospital

28 October 2022

Madeline’s Model, a genomic sequencing partnership linking charity, clinical, academic and research benefits, was officially launched at PA Hospital on 20 October, offering every young Queenslander with cancer upfront genomic sequencing at no cost to the family.

The partnership between Australian Families 4 Genomics, Princess Alexandra Hospital, the Australian Translational Genomics Centre, Cancer Alliance Queensland, and the Centre for Healthcare Transformation at Queensland University of Technology, brings together the separate elements that make genomic testing and its benefits a reality for people undergoing cancer treatment.

Co-Founder at Australian Family for Genomics (AF4G), Hazel Harden was a driving force for making Madeline’s Model a reality for young people with cancer as well as their families, pushing to accelerate genomic testing for all with no exclusions, no exceptions, and no waiting until standard treatments have failed.

“Genomic sequencing gives us the opportunity to double check on the clinical status at that point in time - whether we are absolutely delivering the best care, the most appropriate care to that child or young person at that time,” she said. “Secondly, it's an opportunity to speed up the availability of data for research.”

PA Hospital Medical Oncologist, Dr Kate Roberts said the launch of Madeline’s Model is an essential vehicle to delivering precision medicine for every patient and the unique mutations that apply to their tumour.

“Madeline’s Model is an exceptional initiative to provide state-of-the-art molecular testing to young patients who are undergoing a new diagnosis of malignancy. It provides an opportunity for clinicians to offer the most up-to-date testing to individual patients and potentially change what we're going to do with their treatment or even offer them other therapies,” she said.

Madeline’s Model also offers each person the option to donate their health information to the Australian Omics Library which will build a resource like no other in Australia to accelerate research without the need to send tumour samples to the US.

The ultimate benefit is that clinicians in other hospitals who are treating people with rare cancers with a poor prognosis can access the library and the treatment for similar cases to see what they can change to achieve better outcomes for individuals from the start of their treatment.

About Madeline

Madeline was nearly 10 when she was diagnosed, treated and then relapsed before her family went in search of other treatment options. Genomic sequencing was key to her involvement in trials and alternative therapies.  Madeline’s wish was to help kids with cancer, to suffer less with better access to treatments and she was proud that her participation in a clinical trial was helping others with the analysis of her tumour.   

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Last updated 28 November 2022
Last reviewed 28 October 2022

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