Academic Curriculum Components

Clinical Cancer Genetics Course

All trainees in City of Hope’s Cancer Genetics Career Development Program (CGCDP) are required to complete this 16-week course. This course provides a comprehensive knowledge base in cancer genetics, including the following:
  • Carcinogenesis: cellular, molecular, genetic and environmental etiology
  • Clinical features, pathology, epidemiology and treatment of cancer
  • Hereditary cancer syndromes
  • Cancer risk assessment
  • Cancer genetic counseling skills development
  • Genetic testing: legal, ethical and insurance issues related to genetic testing
  • Role of cancer registries and clinical research trials
Curriculum materials are developed as a 10-day, 60-hour CME-accredited intensive course, which is also open to cancer risk counselors in underserved communities.  
The course curriculum is updated periodically under the direction of the Advisory Committee to accommodate the rapid developments in cancer genetics knowledge. Faculty and trainees have the opportunity to deliver selected lectures and update course content.

Cancer Genetics Working Group

The CME-accredited Clinical Cancer Genetics Working Group is comprised of experts from various disciplines who discuss cases and the best care for each patient. The Working Group convenes weekly to:
  • Review all Cancer Screening & Prevention Program NetworkSM (CSPPN) patient and family case histories
  • Discuss cancer risk assessment, genetic test results interpretation and management strategies
  • Discuss case-related interpersonal and familial psychosocial issues, and candidacy for chemopreventive, epidemiological and behavioral research protocols
The rich clinical experience, coupled with multidisciplinary case discussion, form the cornerstone of the program's experiential training.

Topics in Clinical Cancer Genetics

A weekly lecture series focuses on issues in clinical cancer genetics and cancer genetics research, alternating between didactic lectures and “journal club.” Participants comment on and interpret primary research reports on key topics in molecular cancer genetics, risk assessment, epidemiological and behavioral research, and clinical cancer prevention. They learn how to present findings in summary form and incorporate important research findings into clinical practice and research projects. This lecture series is a primary forum for updates. A list of these topics and attachments to the related articles are also posted on our WebBoard, “The Genetics Link.”
The Genetics Link is City of Hope’s Clinical Cancer Genetics Web forum. To expand their practical knowledge in the field of clinical cancer genetics, members of this discussion group exchange ideas and receive valuable feedback from experts and from one another. Membership in The Genetics Link is open by invitation only and to those who have been part of the Clinical Cancer Genetics Technology Transfer Research courses and outreach activities.

Methods in Cancer Genetics Epidemiology Research

In collaboration with Dr. Stanley Azen, director of the USC Graduate Programs in Biometry and Epidemiology, a dual-track customized curriculum in cancer epidemiology was initiated with University of Southern California. The curriculum consists of two modules, in which trainees enroll concurrently.

Interdisciplinary City of Hope Educational Activities

All trainees are required to participate in interdisciplinary educational activities in selected topics.