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Our teams

Solid Tumour Team
The Leukemia Lymphoma Team

Solid Tumour Team

Our Solid Tumour team is focused on the care of children and adolescents with a variety of solid tumor malignancies, including bone and soft-tissue tumours, liver and kidney tumours, neuroblastoma, retinoblastoma, and rare tumours. The team includes 8 staff physicians with recognized international expertise in clinical care and translational cancer research, as well as three contact nurses, two nurse practitioners and two social workers. We also work in close collaboration with radiation oncologists and with oncologic surgeons from general surgery, orthopedics, neurosurgery and urology. The majority of newly diagnosed patients are discussed at rounds with all team members to determine the best available therapy. Solid Tumour patients have the opportunity to enroll on clinical trials through the Children’s Oncology Group (COG) and patients with relapsed disease have access to Phase I and II trials through COG, NANT, and institutional and industry sponsored trials (NAIT). All members of the team provide inpatient and ambulatory care for solid tumour patients but within the solid tumour program there are also specialized clinics for neuroblastoma, retinoblastoma, renal and  musculoskeletal tumours.  Patients also benefit from access to specialized divisional programs including fertility preservation, cancer genetics, and long-term follow-up programs.


David Malkin
Head, Solid Tumour Section
Expertise: bone and soft tissue tumours, adrenocortical carcinoma, cancer genetics

Daniel Morgenstern
Director, New Agents and Innovative Therapies (NAIT) and MIBG 131 Facility
Expertise: neuroblastoma, early phase trials  

Helen Chan
Expertise: retinoblastoma

Avram Denburg
Expertise: rare tumours, cancer policy, drug access

Ronald Grant
Expertise: renal tumours

Abha Gupta
Expertise: bone and soft tissue tumours, adolescent and young adult oncology, fertility preservation

Meredith Irwin
Expertise: neuroblastoma

Paul Nathan
Expertise: long-term outcomes after cancer therapy (“late effects”), bone and soft tissue sarcomas

Furqan Shaikh
Expertise: rare tumours (including retinoblastoma, germ cell and liver tumors)

Nurse Practitioners:

Denise Mills (expertise: neuroblastoma, MIBG and experimental therapies)
Jocelyne Volpe

Contact Nurses:

Arvinder Aulakh
Alison Clendenning
Allison Starr

Social Workers:

Karen Fung
Carly Nishimura


The Leukemia Lymphoma Team

The Leukemia Lymphoma team treats children; adolescents and young adults diagnosed, for example, with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), acute myeloid leukemia (AML), Hodgkin lymphoma, non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL), Langerhans cell hIstiocytosis (LCH), non-LCH histiocytic disorders and hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis (HLH).    

The group includes 9 staff physicians, who are experts in clinical care and also involved in clinical, laboratory-based or translational research, 4 nurse practitioners, 5 contact nurses and 2 social workers. This team works with pharmacists, dieticians, neuropsychologists, psychologists and child life specialists to provide the best possible care for patients and their families. All newly diagnosed patients are discussed in rounds with all team members to determine the best treatment approach. Each patient and family is followed by a primary team consisting of a physician, nurse practitioner, contact nurse and social worker. Clinical care is provided both in the in-patient and out-patient setting depending on diagnosis and treatment protocol.   All members of the section provide care for patients with leukemia and lymphoma. In addition, there are specialized clinics for histiocytic disorders and follow up clinics for patients with leukemia prior to their transition to the After Care Clinic.

The Leukemia Lymphoma team closely collaborates with the hematopathology (Division of Hematopathology, head: Dr. Mohamed Abdelhaleem) and cytogenetics laboratories (co-director: Dr. Mary Shago) within Pediatric Laboratory Medicine (PLM), the Bone Marrow Transplant Section, radiation oncologists and oncologic surgeons.     

Patients and their families have the opportunity to enroll on research studies which range from large clinical treatment trials conducted by international research groups, such as the Children’s Oncology Group (COG), to hospital-based clinical and experimental research studies and cell banking studies.  Patients with relapsed disease have access to new agents being tested in Phase I and II trials, including immunotherapy, through the Clinical Trials and New Agent and Innovative Therapy Program (NAIT).  Members of the Leukemia Lymphoma Section participate in the SickKids Leukemia Research Group (LRG), which provides a forum for regular interaction between clinicians and researchers focused on childhood leukemia and lymphoma.


Johann Hitzler
Head, Leukemia Lymphoma Section
Special expertise: Leukemias in Down syndrome, relapsed ALL  

Oussama Abla
Special expertise: Acute promyelocytic leukemia, Langerhans cell histiocytosis (LCH) and rare non-LCH hIstiocytic disorders, CNS lymphoma    

Sarah Alexander
Special expertise: Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma, Supportive care    

Sumit Gupta
Special expertise: ALL, Global Health

Ahmed Naqvi
Special expertise: Hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis (HLH)

Angela Punnett
Special expertise: Hodgkin lymphoma, post-transplant lymphoproliferative disorders (PTLD)

Lillian Sung
Special expertise: AML, Supportive care    

Sheila Weitzman
Specific expertise: Langerhans cell hIstiocytosis (LCH) and rare non-LCH histiocytic disorders, hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis (HLH), non-Hodgkin lymphoma

Jim Whitlock
Special expertise: Phase I /II studies, relapsed ALL   

Nurse Practitioners:

Heather Jones Special expertise: Leukemia Lymphoma follow-up clinic  

Julie Watson Special expertise: Quality improvement initiatives

Sue Zupanec Special expertise: Leukemia Lymphoma follow up clinic, Phase I /II studies    

Contact Nurses:

Bina Gandhi
Aliyyah Mohammed
Jose Oliveria
Allison Starr
Denise Stregger

Social Workers:

Sonia Lucchetta
Wendy Shama