A National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center

Make an appointment: 800-826-HOPE
Research Bookmark and Share

Research at City of Hope

Since its founding in 1913, City of Hope has achieved numerous scientific breakthroughs and pioneered many lifesaving procedures that have benefited patients worldwide. Today, we are recognized as a leading research and treatment center dedicated to the prevention, treatment and cure of cancer and other life-threatening diseases. Our mission is to shorten the time from initial research idea to new treatment in order to quickly bring cures to patients. For more information about current lung cancer clinical trials at City of Hope, visit our Clinical Trials page. 

Some of our recent Lung Cancer Research Program studies: 
  
 
  • We are striving to understand how lung cancer spreads so that we can work to prevent metastasis. Some patients will develop lung cancer spread due to microscopic disease at the time of surgery. We are studying markers of metastatic potential within lymph nodes of patients with completely resected non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). We now better understand how the area outside the tumor and the immune system can contribute to cancer spread and are working to find targeted molecules to block tumor metastasis, with the goal of improving survival.
  • Treatment options for advanced stage NSCLC have increased in the last several years and biologic targets have been identified. We continue to evaluate novel therapies through multiple trials of new chemotherapeutic and targeted-therapy agents and novel combinations. As we gain knowledge into the biology of lung cancer, we have also incorporated the evaluation of biomarkers into our trials to better tailor therapies to our patients.
  • Studies with targeted therapies have demonstrated promising results. We seek to improve tumor shrinkage to targeted epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) therapy in advanced NSCLC. To this end, we investigated a cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) inhibitor, celecoxib, in combination with erlotinib, an EGFR inhibitor. The COX-2 pathway plays a key role in tumor growth, angiogenesis and resistance to therapy. We have completed a randomized trial evaluating the combination, and continue to investigate biomarkers to better understand how to select patients who will receive the greatest benefit from this therapy.
  • We are interested in the investigation of novel agents that target immune modulation through natural products. Patients with advanced lung cancer frequently have abnormalities in the immune system, especially depletion of certain T cells and B cells, which are important to the body's defense. Clinical research has shown that beta-glucans found in certain medicinal mushrooms can exert immune- enhancing activity. We have evaluated MM-IO-001, a solution produced from shiitake mushrooms containing beta-glucans, in patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer. The study will determine whether the treatment can improve patients' immune system. Future work will evaluate components of the immune system that may inhibit lung cancer growth.
  • The Quality of Life component of our Lung Cancer and Thoracic Oncology Program conducts research to improve quality of life for lung cancer patients and to design effective interdisciplinary interventions to support lung cancer patients and their families. Because lung cancer patients often present with advanced disease, approaches to care are focused on maximizing quality of life through supportive and palliative care.

Research

Research at City of Hope

Since its founding in 1913, City of Hope has achieved numerous scientific breakthroughs and pioneered many lifesaving procedures that have benefited patients worldwide. Today, we are recognized as a leading research and treatment center dedicated to the prevention, treatment and cure of cancer and other life-threatening diseases. Our mission is to shorten the time from initial research idea to new treatment in order to quickly bring cures to patients. For more information about current lung cancer clinical trials at City of Hope, visit our Clinical Trials page. 

Some of our recent Lung Cancer Research Program studies: 
  
 
  • We are striving to understand how lung cancer spreads so that we can work to prevent metastasis. Some patients will develop lung cancer spread due to microscopic disease at the time of surgery. We are studying markers of metastatic potential within lymph nodes of patients with completely resected non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). We now better understand how the area outside the tumor and the immune system can contribute to cancer spread and are working to find targeted molecules to block tumor metastasis, with the goal of improving survival.
  • Treatment options for advanced stage NSCLC have increased in the last several years and biologic targets have been identified. We continue to evaluate novel therapies through multiple trials of new chemotherapeutic and targeted-therapy agents and novel combinations. As we gain knowledge into the biology of lung cancer, we have also incorporated the evaluation of biomarkers into our trials to better tailor therapies to our patients.
  • Studies with targeted therapies have demonstrated promising results. We seek to improve tumor shrinkage to targeted epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) therapy in advanced NSCLC. To this end, we investigated a cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) inhibitor, celecoxib, in combination with erlotinib, an EGFR inhibitor. The COX-2 pathway plays a key role in tumor growth, angiogenesis and resistance to therapy. We have completed a randomized trial evaluating the combination, and continue to investigate biomarkers to better understand how to select patients who will receive the greatest benefit from this therapy.
  • We are interested in the investigation of novel agents that target immune modulation through natural products. Patients with advanced lung cancer frequently have abnormalities in the immune system, especially depletion of certain T cells and B cells, which are important to the body's defense. Clinical research has shown that beta-glucans found in certain medicinal mushrooms can exert immune- enhancing activity. We have evaluated MM-IO-001, a solution produced from shiitake mushrooms containing beta-glucans, in patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer. The study will determine whether the treatment can improve patients' immune system. Future work will evaluate components of the immune system that may inhibit lung cancer growth.
  • The Quality of Life component of our Lung Cancer and Thoracic Oncology Program conducts research to improve quality of life for lung cancer patients and to design effective interdisciplinary interventions to support lung cancer patients and their families. Because lung cancer patients often present with advanced disease, approaches to care are focused on maximizing quality of life through supportive and palliative care.
Quick Links
About the Lung Cancer Program


Karen Reckamp, M.D., M.S., co-director of the Lung Cancer and Thoracic Oncology Program, discusses lung cancer treatment and research at City of Hope.
Lung Cancer Education Group
Lung Cancer Videos
 
Already a breast cancer survivor, Susan was shocked to learn she'd been diagnosed with lung cancer, though she had never smoked. But she didn't give up hope. Watch Susan's story »
 
Learn more about City of Hope's lung cancer treatments and research by watching the Lung Cancer YouTube playlist »
 
Medical Minute
 
 
 
The Sheri & Les Biller Patient and Family Resource Center embodies the heart and soul of City of Hope’s mission to care for the whole person.
NEWS & UPDATES
  • Rob Darakjian was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia at just 19 years old. He began chemotherapy and was in and out of the hospital for four months. After his fourth round of treatment, he received a bone marrow transplantation from an anonymous donor. Today, he’s cancer free. In his first post, ...
  • Advanced age tops the list among breast cancer risk factor for women. Not far behind is family history and genetics. Two City of Hope researchers delving deep into these issues recently received important grants to advance their studies. Arti Hurria, M.D., director of the Cancer and Aging Research Program, and ...
  • City of Hope is extending the reach of its lifesaving mission well beyond U.S. borders. To that end, three distinguished City of Hope leaders visited China earlier this year to lay the foundation for the institution’s new International Medicine Program. The program is part of City of Hope’s strategi...
  • A hallmark of cancer is that it doesn’t always limit itself to a primary location. It spreads. Breast cancer and lung cancer in particular are prone to spread, or metastasize, to the brain. Often the brain metastasis isn’t discovered until years after the initial diagnosis, just when patients were beginning to ...
  • Blueberries, cinnamon, baikal scullcap, grape seed extract (and grape skin extract), mushrooms, barberry, pomegranates … all contain compounds with the potential to treat, or prevent, cancer. Scientists at City of Hope have found tantalizing evidence of this potential and are determined to explore it to t...
  • Most women who are treated for breast cancer with a mastectomy do not choose to undergo reconstructive surgery. The reasons for this, according to a recent JAMA Surgery study, vary. Nearly half say they do not want any additional surgery, while nearly 34 percent say breast cancer reconstruction simply isn’t imp...
  • The leading risk factor for breast cancer is simply being a woman. The second top risk factor is getting older. Obviously, these two factors cannot be controlled, which is why all women should be aware of their risk and how to minimize those risks. Many risk factors can be mitigated, and simple changes can lead...
  • All women are at some risk of developing the disease in their lifetimes, but breast cancer, like other cancers, has a disproportionate effect on minorities. Although white women have the highest incidence of breast cancer, African-American women have the highest breast cancer death rates of all racial and ethni...
  • First, the good news: HIV infections have dropped dramatically over the past 30 years. Doctors, researchers and health officials have made great strides in preventing and treating the disease, turning what was once a death sentence into, for some, a chronic condition. Now, the reality check: HIV is still a worl...
  • Screening for breast cancer has dramatically increased the number of cancers found before they cause symptoms – catching the disease when it is most treatable and curable. Mammograms, however, are not infallible. It’s important to conduct self-exams, and know the signs and symptoms that should be checked by a h...
  • Rob Darakjian was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia at just 19 years old. He began chemotherapy and was in and out of the hospital for four months. After his fourth round of treatment, he received a bone marrow transplantation from an anonymous donor. Today, he’s cancer free.   In his previ...
  • In a single day, former professional triathlete Lisa Birk learned she couldn’t have children and that she had breast cancer. “Where do you go from there?” she asks. For Birk, who swims three miles, runs 10 miles and cycles every day, the answer  ultimately was a decision to take control of her cancer care. Afte...
  • More and more people are surviving cancer, thanks to advanced cancer treatments and screening tools. Today there are nearly 14.5 million cancer survivors in the United States. But in up to 20 percent of cancer patients, the disease ultimately spreads to their brain. Each year, nearly 170,000 new cases of brain ...
  • Cancer cells are masters of survival. Despite excessive damage to their most basic workings and the constant vigilance of the body’s immune system, they manage to persevere. Much of this extraordinary ability to survive falls under the control of proteins bearing the name STAT, short for signal transducer and a...
  • One person receives the breast cancer diagnosis, but the cancer affects the entire family. Couples, in particular, can find the diagnosis and treatment challenging, especially if they have traditional male/female communication styles. “Though every individual is unique, men and women often respond differently d...