world for research studies,” said Cohn, who noted that 17 published research studies were made pos- sible by the database. “Many of these studies evaluated small patient cohorts and the analysis would not have been possible without the large numbers of patients included in the INRG Data Commons. The INRG Data Commons,” said Cohn, has already led to improved and new approaches to ther- apy, and has been a major force in increasing international collaboration. “That is really where all this started—realizing the power that can come from putting all the data in one place,” said Volchenboum, who hopes the PCDC will do the same for other types of pediatric cancer. In 2015, the CRI established a partnership with the Center for Data Intensive Science, directed by Robert Grossman, PhD, Frederick H. Rawson Professor in Medicine and Computer Science. Through this partner- ship, they were able to integrate the INRG Data Commons with the NCI Genomic Data Commons (GDC)—housed at UChicago and led by Grossman—and the A Super Start for Pediatric Cancer ‘Game Changer’ Plans to build at the University of Chicago a Pediatric Cancer Data Commons (PCDC), a globe-spanning database focused exclusively on pediatric cancers, recently got a boost from Sammy’s Superheroes Foundation. The Columbus, NE-based foundation committed $400,000 over four years to the database project, which is overseen by Susan Cohn, MD, and Samuel Volchenboum, MD, PhD. The nonprofit, tax-exempt foundation sprang from grassroots support for Sammy Nahorny, who in 2012 was diagnosed with neuroblastoma at the age of four. Two years later, when Sammy didn’t respond to surgery, chemotherapy, and a stem cell transplant, his family brought him to University of Chicago Medicine Comer Children’s Hospital to receive an innovative treatment. He was isolated in a lead-lined room while a team led by Cohn administered intensive MIBG therapy, which destroys tumor cells while leav- ing healthy tissue intact. Today, Sammy is a healthy, well-adjusted 9-year-old whose mother, Erin, says shows no signs of the journey he went through on his way to recovery. Erin notes that the gift to PCDC fits perfectly with the mission of Sammy’s Superheroes to raise aware- ness and much needed funding for research of all types of childhood cancer. “This project is just so exciting because of the implication it has on any child with cancer,” she adds. “There’s a big picture here. Connecting doctors and researchers across the coun- try and world to a common database … brings together everyone with a shared voice.” “Connecting doctors and researchers across the country and world to a common database  … brings together everyone with a shared voice.” — Erin Nahorny 29