Our Researchers


Dr. Carl Allen is an associate professor of pediatric hematology-oncology. He is co-director of the Texas Children’s Cancer Center Histiocytosis and Lymphoma Programs with clinical and research focus is on understanding aberrant immune function in human disease, including histiocytic disorders, lymphoproliferative disorders and lymphomas.

The goal of his research is to improve outcomes for patients, with projects ranging from discovery of basic mechanisms of pathogenesis through implementation of multi-institutional clinical research trials.


Dr. Kala Kamdar's principal research interest is in the prevention of long-term complications of childhood cancer therapies. Due to the need for cancer therapies at a young age, adult survivors of childhood cancer face unique long-term health problems, including neurocognitive impairment and learning difficulties.



Dr. Helen Heslop is a physician-scientist engaged in translational research focusing on adoptive immunotherapy with gene-modified effector cells, to improve hemopoietic stem cell transplantation and cancer therapy. A key step in this strategy has been the translation of laboratory findings to Phase I and II clinical trials, as exemplified by studies of Epstein Barr virus-induced lymphoproliferative disease (EBV-LPD), a fatal complication in about 15% of recipients of unrelated or mismatched family member bone marrow transplants in the early 1990s.


Research Interests
Molecular causes of leukemia and lymphoma
Proteomics and the deregulation of cell cycle protein degradation during the development of malignancy
Developmental Therapeutics


His research interests include identifying biological predictors of disease response in childhood and adolescent lymphomas in particular Hodgkin lymphoma, and leveraging these to improve treatment outcomes and reduce treatment-related morbidity in resource-limited settings. He is also interested in clinical trials in pediatric lymphomas.


Dr. Cliona Rooney’s research interests are immunotherapies for virus and non-virus-associated malignancies and diseases. In protocols developed with Dr. Helen Heslop, Dr. Malcolm Brenner, Dr. Stephen Gottschalk and Dr. Catherine Bollard, about 150 patients have received EBV or antigen-specific cytotoxic T-cells.