Ewing Sarcoma - Childhood and Adolescence: Latest Research

Approved by the Cancer.Net Editorial Board, 01/2019

ON THIS PAGE: You will read about the scientific research being done now to learn more about Ewing sarcoma and how to treat it. Use the menu to see other pages.

Doctors are working to learn more about Ewing sarcoma, how to best treat it, and how to provide the best care to people diagnosed with this disease. The following areas of research may include new options for patients through clinical trials. Always talk with the doctor about the best diagnostic and treatment options for you or your child.

  • Allogeneic stem cell transplantation. In an ALLO bone marrow/stem cell transplant (see Types of Treatment for a description), the patient is treated with high doses of chemotherapy, radiation therapy, or both to destroy as many tumor cells as possible and to prevent the patient’s immune system from rejecting the donated stem cells. After the high-dose therapy is given, stem cells obtained from a healthy donor, usually a sibling, are infused into the patient's bloodstream. ALLO stem cell transplants combined with sirolimus (Rapamune) and other drugs have been shown to prevent the growth of Ewing cells in the laboratory.

  • Bilateral lung radiation. For all patients with disease that has spread to the lung, whole-lung radiation therapy should be considered, even if chemotherapy has removed most signs of metastatic disease. During this treatment, radiation therapy is given to both lungs after the patient has completed chemotherapy. For some patients, autologous (AUTO) bone marrow/stem cell transplant is recommended but should only be done in a clinical trial.

  • Insulin-like growth factor receptor-1 (IGF-1R) antibodies. The IGF-1R is an important growth protein for sarcomas. Blocking its activity may be an effective new way to improve sarcoma treatment. This new type of treatment combined with chemotherapy is being studied for people newly diagnosed with metastatic Ewing sarcoma.

  • Palliative care. Clinical trials are underway to find better ways of reducing symptoms and side effects of current Ewing sarcoma treatments to improve patients’ comfort and quality of life.

  • Recurrent disease. Some studies focused on recurrent Ewing sarcoma are evaluating tumor DNA to look for molecular changes that can be targeted during treatment. This is done using a technology called next-generation sequencing.

Looking for More About the Latest Research?

If you would like additional information about the latest areas of research regarding Ewing sarcoma, explore these related items that will take you outside of this guide:

The next section in this guide is Coping with Treatment. It offers some guidance in how to cope with the physical, emotional, and social changes that cancer and its treatment can bring. Use the menu to choose a different section to read in this guide.