Hematologic Malignancies

Cancer of hematologic origin (arising from precursor cells in the bone marrow, lymph nodes or blood) can be just as aggressive as cancers that form solid masses, and are often widely disseminated. Fortunately, the long-term strategies offered by City of Hope’s Hematologic Malignancies Program have dramatically improved the lives of patients with acute and chronic leukemia, Hodgkin and non-Hodgkin lymphoma, multiple myeloma, and myleodysplastic/myeloproliferative neoplasms — some of the many cancers associated with transformation of hematologic precursor and stem cells.

Intensive studies within the Hematologic Malignancies Program have a bench-to-bedside approach to problems in hematological cancers. In addition to investigator-initiated clinical studies using existing agents, the program's basic researchers study aberrant pathways in cancer to find new ways to target and prevent blood cancer. Research scientists and clinicians are also actively engaged in novel immunotherapeutic approaches including both antibody-based and cell-based therapies to provide treatment to patients who may be unresponsive to standard agents. Capitalizing on the close connections with the program's clinical staff, our shared resources and clinical trial office, translation of these basic research findings is a highly effective team endeavor.

Led by internationally renowned physicians Stephen J. Forman, M.D., and Wing-Chung (John) Chan, M.D., the Hematologic Malignancies Program pursues three powerful objectives:

  • To identify key biological pathways and targeting strategies for hematologic malignancies
  • To develop novel therapeutic approaches for early-phase clinical testing
  • To advance translational research in hematopoietic cell transplantation and adoptive cellular immunotherapy
The Hematologic Malignancies Program improves public health both through its refinement of currently available treatment options for hematological malignancies and its advancement of novel therapies to the clinic. The team explores multiple avenues of treatment — chemotherapy, immunotherapy, gene therapy, targeted therapy, chimeric antigen receptor, or CAR, T cell therapy and hematopoietic cell transplantation — to improve patient cure rates and treatment tolerability.

By bringing together clinical and basic scientists in dynamic ways, City of Hope’s clinical transplant activities are enriched by studies into individual diseases (leukemia, lymphomas and multiple myeloma). The result enables a comprehensive, coordinated approach to treating cancer in all its forms — in the bloodstream and elsewhere.