Ben Towne Center for Childhood Cancer Research

The Ben Towne Center’s mission is to translate scientific discoveries into innovative therapies that cure childhood cancer with minimal side effects and improve survivors’ quality of life.

Our Vision

We are spearheading treatments that use the immune system to eliminate cancer, without chemotherapy or radiation. Our goal is to render today’s therapies obsolete until treating childhood cancer is no different than treating an everyday virus.

Accelerating Progress Toward Cures

  • Goal: Cure Neuroblastoma

    Dr. Julie Park is leading one of the world’s first clinical studies of immunotherapy for neuroblastoma – the deadliest childhood cancer.

  • We Need Your Help

    You can help bring an end to childhood cancer all over the world, by supporting our Strong Against Cancer fundraising initiative.

Participate in Research

Our researchers have started the first round of clinical trials exploring a potential cure.

Help us answer questions about childhood health and illness, and help other children in the future. Learn more.


Developing groundbreaking cancer treatments takes more than just the right ideas. It also takes the right people.

Please visit Seattle Children’s careers page to learn about current openings.

For information about potential opportunities in the Ben Towne Center, email us.

Latest News

Seattle Children's 'Brain Child' study seeks to stop brain cancer at the source6.19.2018 –
More than 4,000 children battle brain cancer every year. About 25% of the time, the cancer returns after treatment. Seattle Children's has announced a new study, BrainChild-01, that seeks to stop cancer when it recurs. It takes a different approach to immunotherapy, a treatment that uses the body's own cells to target cancer. This time, doctors plan to inject cancer-fighting CAR T-cells directly into the brain. "We are using a newer generation of CAR T-cells with better signaling domains around it that will help the cell activate better," said neuro-oncologist Dr. Nick Vitanza, who moved to Seattle to work on studies like this with Dr. Mike Jensen, director of the Ben Towne Center for Childhood Cancer Research. “This is very exciting new technology,” Vitanza said. “It's offering a new chance for a lot of people who thought they were out of chances.”

New cancer immunotherapies could revolutionize how we treat the disease, but for many children, those treatments are far out of reach. A new collaboration between four children’s hospitals across North America is working to solve that. The collaborative, called CureWorks, is spearheaded by Seattle Children’s and will allow patients at the three other member hospitals to receive cutting-edge CAR T immunotherapy treatments. “What we hope to do through CureWorks is to, in a sense, democratize access to these very complex but potentially revolutionary cancer immunotherapies for children,” said Dr. Mike Jensen, CureWorks’ executive director and director of the Ben Towne Center for Childhood Cancer Research at Seattle Children’s Research Institute.

I was not ready to die: How Seattle Children’s immunotherapy saved my life – 3.22.2018 – On the Pulse
Seattle Children’s doctors and researchers are leading efforts to better treat cancer in children, adolescents and young adults by boosting the immune system with T-cell immunotherapy. Patients who cannot be cured with standard therapies are benefiting from clinical trials developed at the Ben Towne Center for Childhood Cancer Research, and supported by the Strong Against Cancer initiative. One of these patients is Aaron. When he feared he might be out of treatment options, Aaron found hope at Seattle Children’s. Now, he shares his story.