Stomach Cancer Research and Clinical Trials

There is extensive collaboration between City of Hope clinicians and researchers to develop and evaluate new stomach cancer therapies designed  to improve survival and quality of life outcomes. City of Hope patients have access to a wide variety of clinical trials ranging from new chemotherapy and targeted therapies, novel surgical techniques and new radiation approaches — all focused on enhancing  treatment, detection and prevention of stomach cancer.
Some of our current research projects:
  • Investigators at City of Hope have developed a vaccine that can treat stomach cancer by stimulating an immune response against the cancer cells. In a Phase I clinical trial, 12 patients have received this vaccine and they will be tracked for five years to determine its effectiveness and tolerability.
  • City of Hope researchers, in collaboration with the California Institute of Technology, have developed a nanoparticle formulation of the chemotherapy drug camptothecin called CRLX101. CRLX101’s small size enables it to permeate the more leaky blood vessels present in tumors, allowing the anti-cancer drug to accumulate at cancer sites and minimizing its side effects on normal tissues. The drug has already shown promise for patients with lung and pancreatic cancers, and investigators hope it will have benefits for stomach cancer patients as well.
  • Overexpression of the HER2 protein in some stomach cancers can be exploited for imaging purposes, since they will take in more trastuzumab (Herceptin) than normal tissues. Using this knowledge, researchers are investigating whether linking trastuzumab to imaging agent 64Cu-DOTA results in better visualization of tumors in a positron emission tomography (PET) scan.
  • Following surgery to treat stomach cancer, some patients may have trouble eating, drinking and maintaining a healthy body weight—all of which can lead to poorer outcomes and quality of life. To address this, Division of Nursing Research and Education is currently conducting an assessment study of patients’ dietary habits and problems following gastric surgery. The research team will then use the results to develop a supportive care program to help patients adjust to new eating patterns after surgery.
If you have been diagnosed with stomach cancer or are looking for a second opinion consultation about your treatment, find out more about becoming a patient or contact us at 800-826-HOPE.