COVID-19 Updates: Latest Information for Parents
Rady Children's Specialists

Cancer & Blood Disorders

Leukemia and Lymphoma Program

The Leukemia and Lymphoma Program at the Peckham Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders is dedicated to the comprehensive care of children, adolescents and young adults with newly diagnosed and relapsed leukemias and lymphomas. Although childhood cancers are rare, leukemia and lymphomas account for 40 percent of all pediatric cancers.

Our care approach involves a multidisciplinary team of pediatric oncologists, nurse practitioners, pharmacists, nurse care managers, social workers and psychologists. We not only provide treatments for our patients, but supportive care for the entire family.

As part of the National Cancer Institute-designated UC San Diego Moores Comprehensive Cancer Center, our Leukemia and Lymphoma program is committed to providing state-of-the-art care through the latest and most advanced clinical trials. Our pediatric oncologists who are faculty at UC San Diego School of Medicine are also involved in research projects aiming to understand the development of leukemia, discovery of novel therapies for leukemia and lymphoma, and the impact of pediatric leukemia/lymphoma on social determinants of health. 

Conditions Treated

Our Team

Physicians

Paula Aristizabal, M.D., M.A.S., Medical Director, International Outreach Program, Pediatric Hematology/Oncology; Site Director for Pediatric Residency Education in Mexico, Department of Pediatrics, UC San Diego/Rady Children’s; Associate Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC San Diego

 

Kelly Bush, M.D., Pediatric Hematologist/Oncologist

 

 

Hilda Ding, M.D., M.S., Assistant Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC San Diego

 

 

Anusha Preethi Ganesan, M.D., Ph.D., Adjunct Assistant Professor of Pediatrics

 

 

Nicholas Gloude, M.D., Director, Bone Marrow Failure Program; Assistant Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC San Diego

 

 

Dennis Kuo, M.D., M.S., Medical Director, Long-Term Follow-up Program; Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC San Diego

 

 

Deborah E. Schiff, M.D., Medical Director, Palliative Care Program, Peckham Center; Clinical Professor of Pediatrics, UC San Diego

 

 

Victor Wong, M.D., Assistant Clinical Professor, UC San Diego

 

 

Nurse Practitioners

Kate Keese, R.N., M.S.N., CPNP

Christina Killian-Benigno, BSN, RN, CFNP

Nathalie Lefloch, BSN, RN, CPNP

Jeanie Spies, R.N., M.S.N., CPNP

Lanipua Yeh-Nayre, BSN, RN, CPNP

Nurse Case Manager

Susan Simpson, B.S.N., R.N., CPHON

Research Manager

Mehrzad Milburn, B.S.N., R.N., CCRC 

Clinical Trials

We are a member of research consortia that include the Children’s Oncology Group (COG) and St. Jude’s Research Hospital. As a collaborating site, we are able to offer innovative clinical trials to pediatric oncology patients. Patients who are eligible have the option to enroll in early phase clinical trials and larger phase III trials that incorporate new modalities, including immunotherapy in the treatment of pediatric leukemias and lymphomas. 

See Active Clinical Trials.

Other Research 

As the pediatric oncology branch of the NCI-designated UC San Diego Mores Comprehensive Cancer Center, we are part of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network, where our pediatric oncologists are part of the panel of experts that create and review NCCN disease-specific guidelines. In addition, faculty members are actively involved in committees within COG and St. Jude’s. 

Several of our team members are actively involved in clinical research looking at health care disparities. They are also collaborating on translational projects with basic scientists at UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center, La Jolla Institute of Immunology, Scripps Research and Salk Research Institute.