A National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center

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A Commitment to Create
A major focus for City of Hope researchers has been creating ways to reduce the incidence of major transplant risks such as infection and relapse. They publish their results in prominent peer-reviewed medical journals.
 
Nonmyeloablative (Mini) Transplants

One of these innovative protocols, nonmyeloablative transplants, has allowed patients who could not tolerate the traditional pre-transplant regiments to become candidates for the procedure.
 
Originally, pre-transplant protocols required high-dose chemotherapy and/or high-dose whole-body irradiation. For elderly patients or patients with other diseases, these protocols were too demanding and often excluded them from transplants.

In order to improve both the safety of transplantation and its applicability to a larger number of patients, City of Hope developed an approach in 1998 for a “mini” transplant. These transplants rely less on the heavy doses of chemotherapy and radiation and more on the antitumor effects of the graft itself (known as a graft-versus-tumor effect).
 
This novel approach has allowed for transplants in patients who are older, including patients in their 70s, who would previously not have been eligible for a transplant. These patients, with conditions such as leukemia, myeloma, lymphoma and myelodysplasia, have been significantly helped – even cured – by mini transplants.
 
SPORE Grant

The City of Hope Hematologic Neoplasia Program was awarded a Specialized Program of Research Excellence (SPORE) grant to further its work in utilizing transplant and non-transplant approaches for the treatment of malignant lymphoma and Hodgkin lymphoma. This SPORE is one of only three SPORE awards granted in the United States and builds upon the expertise in the transplant and cancer immunotherapy programs at City of Hope.
 
National Cancer Institute Project Grant

The City of Hope’s HCT Program has been continuously funded for nearly 30 years by the National Cancer Institute (NCI) to develop innovative therapies for people battling leukemia, lymphoma and other cancers. The NCI grant supports continuing research aimed at improving the outcome for patients undergoing either autologous or allogeneic transplant for hematologic cancer. The grant also allows researchers at City of Hope to develop laboratory-based clinical studies to extend the boundaries of HCT into new areas. These studies include the development of therapies incorporating the emerging sciences of gene transfer, molecular biology, radioimmunotherapy, cellular immunotherapy and genetics into allogeneic and autologous transplant.
 
City of Hope Named Center of Excellence for MDS
 
City of Hope physicians and researchers continue to lead the way in improving treatments and outcomes for patients with myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS). City of Hope’s Clinical and Translational Research Program has had funding for the Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation Program by the National Cancer Institute since 1981. The MDS Foundation recognized City of Hope as a Center of Excellence for MDS in 1998 in recognition of the program’s basic and clinical research. designation.
 
Adoptive T Cell Therapy

T cells are a powerful part of the immune system. A new approach being studied at City of Hope involves redirecting T cells to recognize cancer cells specific to lymphoma and leukemia. Researchers are taking T cells from patients with these cancers and genetically modifying them to target and destroy the malignant T cells. Studies are focusing on patients with recurrent diffuse large cell lymphoma, acute lymphoblastic leukemia  who are undergoing autologous stem cell transplantation.
 
Long-term Follow-up Program
 
City of Hope recognizes the importance of maintaining contact with all transplant patients. Our transplant program established a formal Long-term Follow-up Program in 1998 that follows all patients who have received a transplant at City of Hope. The Long-term Follow-up Program helps researchers compile data on long-term outcomes to increase awareness of the kinds of problems, both physical and psychological, that some patients face after transplant, so patients can receive continuing advice, information and care.
 
 

Research

A Commitment to Create
A major focus for City of Hope researchers has been creating ways to reduce the incidence of major transplant risks such as infection and relapse. They publish their results in prominent peer-reviewed medical journals.
 
Nonmyeloablative (Mini) Transplants

One of these innovative protocols, nonmyeloablative transplants, has allowed patients who could not tolerate the traditional pre-transplant regiments to become candidates for the procedure.
 
Originally, pre-transplant protocols required high-dose chemotherapy and/or high-dose whole-body irradiation. For elderly patients or patients with other diseases, these protocols were too demanding and often excluded them from transplants.

In order to improve both the safety of transplantation and its applicability to a larger number of patients, City of Hope developed an approach in 1998 for a “mini” transplant. These transplants rely less on the heavy doses of chemotherapy and radiation and more on the antitumor effects of the graft itself (known as a graft-versus-tumor effect).
 
This novel approach has allowed for transplants in patients who are older, including patients in their 70s, who would previously not have been eligible for a transplant. These patients, with conditions such as leukemia, myeloma, lymphoma and myelodysplasia, have been significantly helped – even cured – by mini transplants.
 
SPORE Grant

The City of Hope Hematologic Neoplasia Program was awarded a Specialized Program of Research Excellence (SPORE) grant to further its work in utilizing transplant and non-transplant approaches for the treatment of malignant lymphoma and Hodgkin lymphoma. This SPORE is one of only three SPORE awards granted in the United States and builds upon the expertise in the transplant and cancer immunotherapy programs at City of Hope.
 
National Cancer Institute Project Grant

The City of Hope’s HCT Program has been continuously funded for nearly 30 years by the National Cancer Institute (NCI) to develop innovative therapies for people battling leukemia, lymphoma and other cancers. The NCI grant supports continuing research aimed at improving the outcome for patients undergoing either autologous or allogeneic transplant for hematologic cancer. The grant also allows researchers at City of Hope to develop laboratory-based clinical studies to extend the boundaries of HCT into new areas. These studies include the development of therapies incorporating the emerging sciences of gene transfer, molecular biology, radioimmunotherapy, cellular immunotherapy and genetics into allogeneic and autologous transplant.
 
City of Hope Named Center of Excellence for MDS
 
City of Hope physicians and researchers continue to lead the way in improving treatments and outcomes for patients with myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS). City of Hope’s Clinical and Translational Research Program has had funding for the Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation Program by the National Cancer Institute since 1981. The MDS Foundation recognized City of Hope as a Center of Excellence for MDS in 1998 in recognition of the program’s basic and clinical research. designation.
 
Adoptive T Cell Therapy

T cells are a powerful part of the immune system. A new approach being studied at City of Hope involves redirecting T cells to recognize cancer cells specific to lymphoma and leukemia. Researchers are taking T cells from patients with these cancers and genetically modifying them to target and destroy the malignant T cells. Studies are focusing on patients with recurrent diffuse large cell lymphoma, acute lymphoblastic leukemia  who are undergoing autologous stem cell transplantation.
 
Long-term Follow-up Program
 
City of Hope recognizes the importance of maintaining contact with all transplant patients. Our transplant program established a formal Long-term Follow-up Program in 1998 that follows all patients who have received a transplant at City of Hope. The Long-term Follow-up Program helps researchers compile data on long-term outcomes to increase awareness of the kinds of problems, both physical and psychological, that some patients face after transplant, so patients can receive continuing advice, information and care.
 
 
Musician George Winston has new goal: Say ‘thank you’ inGerman

Musician George Winston has new goal: Say ‘thank you’ in German

George Winston, known worldwide for his impressionistic, genre-defying music, considers music to be his first language, and admits he often stumbles over words – especially when he attempts languages ...

April 11, 2014

 
When a child has cancer: What friends and visitors shouldknow

When a child has cancer: What friends and visitors should know

When a child is diagnosed with cancer, friends and relatives of the family often don’t know what to say, what to do, how to react. Some visitors linger for hours in the child’s hospital room, further ...

February 6, 2014

 
When a child has cancer: One family’s advice to otherparents

When a child has cancer: One family’s advice to other parents

Gavin Wolfrank was only 7 months old in 2006 when his mother noticed the “blueberry” bruises on his tiny hand. Her normally active, happy baby suddenly turned lethargic and inconsolable. Ultimate...

January 30, 2014

 
A simple act in Rhode Island, a lifesaving transplant inDuarte

A simple act in Rhode Island, a lifesaving transplant in Duarte

Stem cell donations are usually an anonymous gift, with people who want to help others donating their lifesaving cells simply from the rightness and joy of being able to save another human being....

January 1, 2014

 
Stem cell transplants can take toll on sexual health, studyfinds

Stem cell transplants can take toll on sexual health, study finds

Blood and bone marrow stem cell transplants can be lifesaving procedures for patients with blood cancers such as leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma. But they can take a heavy physical and emotional toll. ...

November 4, 2013

 
About the HCT Program
Stephen J. Forman, M.D., chair of hematology and hematopoietic cell transplantation, shares his views on the essence of care at City of Hope. He highlights the bone marrow transplant program (BMT) and the program's growth over the years.
 
Other videos:
 
Past BMT Reunions
Each year, City of Hope invites bone marrow transplant recipients and their families to attend the "Celebration of Life" event. View highlights from past reunions.
 
Physicians in the United States and throughout the world are welcome to refer patients to City of Hope.

There are a number of options you can choose from to refer a patient:

  • Call 800-826-HOPE (4673) to speak with a patient referral specialist.
  • Fax the patient face sheet to 626-301-8432
  • Complete an online callback request form
 
The focus of the Division of Hematopoietic Stem Cell and Leukemia Research is to improve the understanding of leukemia stem cells in order to develop cures for leukemia and other hematologic malignancies.
City of Hope's partnership with the Los Angeles Dodgers, includes ThinkCure!, an innovative, community-based non-profit that raises funds to accelerate collaborative research at City of Hope and Childrens Hospital Los Angeles to cure cancers.
 
NEWS & UPDATES
  • Brain tumor removal would seem to be the obvious course of action in the wake of a brain tumor diagnosis, but that’s not always the case. Some tumors are too difficult for many surgeons to reach or too close to areas that control vital functions. Removing them just proves too risky. A new device at City [...
  • Hijacking the same sorts of viruses that cause HIV and using them to reprogram immune cells to fight cancer sounds like stuff of the future. Some scientists believe that the future is closer than we think – and are now studying the approach in clinical trials at City of Hope. Immunotherapy is a promising approa...
  • Nausea is the one of the most well-known, and dreaded, side effects of cancer treatment — and with good reason. Beyond the quality-of-life issues that it causes, severe nausea can prevent patients from receiving enough nutrients and calories at a time when they need every edge they can get. A few simple actions...
  • With Labor Day just around the corner, summer is on its way out. But just because summertime is ending doesn’t mean we can skip sunscreen. Protection from ultraviolet (UV) radiation is needed all year round. Exposure to UV radiation — whether from the sun or from artificial sources such as sunlamps used i...
  • Undergoing reconstructive surgery may seem like a forgone conclusion for survivors of breast cancer, but that doesn’t appear to be the case. A new study has found that most breast cancer survivors who undergo a mastectomy decide against surgical reconstruction of their breasts. The reasons for such a deci...
  • Nearly four decades ago, City of Hope began its bone marrow transplant program. Its first transplant reunion celebration was a single patient and his donor, also his brother. This year, City of Hope welcomed hundreds of hematopoietic cell transplant (HCT) recipients to the annual bone marrow transplant/HCT reun...
  • The burgeoning type 2 diabetes epidemic casts a pall over the health of America’s public. New research now shows the looming threat is getting worse. Much worse. A diabetes trends study published earlier this month in the Lancet Diabetes and Endocrinology by researchers at the federal Centers for Disease Contro...
  • An aspirin a day might help keep breast cancer away for some breast cancer survivors, a new study suggests. Obese women who have had breast cancer could cut their risk of a recurrence in half if they regularly take aspirin or other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, called NSAIDs, report researchers from the...
  • Christine Crews isn’t only a fitness enthusiast, she’s also a personal trainer and fitness instructor. Being active defines her life. So when she was diagnosed with bladder cancer at age 30, she decided she absolutely couldn’t let the disease interfere with that lifestyle. And it didn’t. For t...
  • Cancer treatment and the cancer itself can cause changes in your sense of taste or smell. These side effects typically subside after treatment ends, but there are ways to help alleviate those bitter and metallic tastes in your mouth. Here are tips from the National Cancer Institute to help keeps tastes and food...
  • Immunotherapy — using one’s immune system to treat a disease — has been long lauded as the “magic bullet” of cancer treatments, one that can be more effective than the conventional therapies of surgery, radiation or chemotherapy. One specific type of immunotherapy, called adoptive T cell thera...
  • Today, when cancer spreads from its original site to other parts of the body, a process known as metastasis, patients face an uphill battle. Treatments are poorly effective, and cures are nearly impossible. Further, incidence rates for these types of cancers are increasing – particularly for cancers that have s...
  • Thanks to the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM), high school students across the state gained valuable hands-on experience with stem cell research this summer. City of Hope hosted eight of those students. As part of the CIRM Creativity Awards program, the young scholars worked full time as m...
  • Radiation therapy can help cure many children facing Hodgkin lymphoma and other cancers. When the radiation is delivered to a girl’s chest, however, it can lead to a marked increase in breast cancer risk later in life. A recent multi-institutional study that included City of Hope’s Smita Bhatia, M.D., M.P.H., t...
  • A patient diagnosed with cancer – especially a rare, advanced or hard-to-treat cancer – needs specialized care from exceptionally skilled and highly trained experts. That kind of care saves lives, improves quality of life and keeps families whole. That kind of care is best found at comprehensive cancer centers ...