Cancer Control and Population Sciences

The mission of City of Hope’s Cancer Control and Population Sciences Program is to advance the science and application of cancer etiology, prevention and outcomes research, and to reduce the burden of cancer across all segments of the population through collaborative, interdisciplinary, interventional and educational efforts.

Program leaders Susan L. Neuhausen, Ph.D., and Saro Armenian, D.O., M.P.H., lead a team of prominent clinical, translational and basic scientific researchers, who are highly focused on studying causes of cancer, as well as ways to prevent it, detect it earlier, improve tolerance of treatment, and manage its symptoms and the quality of life for patients during treatment and beyond.

Researcher efforts are focused on the following:
  • Discovering and interpreting host and environmental factors contributing to cancer (program members are dedicated to discovering genetic and lifestyle factors for prevention, and developing approaches for more precise risk assessment, risk reduction and biomarkers for early detection of cancer. Some studies are aided by the large prospective California Teachers Study and the Clinical Cancer Genomics Community Research Network Registry).
  • Determining the pathophysiology and risk factors to reduce treatment-related morbidities and improve outcomes (program members are identifying factors that affect outcomes during and after treatment for cancer, and approaches to mitigate the side effects of treatment and long-term side effects associated with treatment).
  • Developing, implementing and evaluating interventions to reduce cancer-related morbidity/mortality and improve quality of life (program members are conducting interventions that range from biobehavioral to pharmacologic).
The Cancer Control and Population Sciences Program is particularly invested in the following areas:
  • Building a robust portfolio of research in cancer etiology and biomarker development
  • Strengthening our understanding of risk factors for treatment-related complications and developing tailored interventions to reduce morbidity in cancer survivors
  • Recognizing causes of disparities in outcome unique to disease type and developing tailored interventions to systematically mitigate those disparities
  • Continuing to build upon the strong portfolio of research in psychosocial outcomes and tailored interventions to improve quality of life
Within each of these areas, research is ongoing to reduce health disparities within our catchment area. All research associated with the Cancer Control and Population Sciences Program involves strong educational components, ranging from K-12 programs in the community to health care provider and caregiver training designed to enable better communication and care for cancer survivors.

The results of research conducted by investigators in the Cancer Control and Population Sciences Program is shared not only within the program but also with City of Hope’s other cancer research programs. This allows all programs to benefit from data accumulated from population-based studies.

The Center for Cancer and Aging, the Center for Survivorship and Outcomes and the Center of Community Alliance for Research & Education facilitate City of Hope’s ability to provide valuable health education to underserved populations.