French scientist, Dr Sébastien Malinge, moved from Paris to Perth six months ago to work as an Ursula Kees Fellow. He now works in a lab funded by the Children’s Leukaemia & Cancer Research Foundation within the Telethon Kids Institute. Sébastien is enjoying his time in Perth and continues his insightful research into better therapies for children who have leukaemia. We interviewed Sébastien on 12 April at the Telethon Kids Institute to learn more about him and his research.
Sébastien’s PhD research in 2006 at the Necker Hospital in Paris was focused on discovering the genetic causes of leukaemia among children with Down’s Syndrome. Sébastien then moved to the United States to complete a post-doctoral fellowship to investigate why children with Down’s Syndrome were at higher risk of developing leukaemia than children without the condition. He moved back to Paris in 2012 to expand on what he studied.
When asked about what receiving the Ursula Kees Fellowship means to him, Sébastien says he feels privileged to receive this position.
“I met Ursula in 2016 when she invited me to present my work at the Telethon Kids Institute.
“I am very proud of having received this fellowship and continue to pursue her legacy. We work towards the same goal of finding better treatments for children with leukaemia.”
Sébastien is currently focusing on building a cohort of preclinical tools to test hypotheses with the view of testing new cancer therapies. He seeks to understand why some children relapse and the reason as to why some cancer cells are resistant to chemotherapy. He hopes that his research will give some clues to develop new therapies targeting therapy-resistant cancer cells and decrease the rate of relapse.
Sébastien believes that funding into cancer research is crucial for discovering better therapies.
“Some of these leukaemia treatments for children are successful but have high toxicity. Therefore, we need funding to find better ways to maximise the well-being of these children not only during but also after chemotherapy.”
Thank you Dr Sébastien Malinge for accepting the Ursula Kees fellowship. We are excited to have you on board and look forward to learning more about your research into finding better therapies for children with leukaemia.