A National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center

Make an appointment: 800-826-HOPE
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Community Outreach

As a Comprehensive Cancer Center, City of Hope plays an important role in the community. We continually use the knowledge gained from our ongoing research to influence the standards of prevention and care, and to educate physicians, caregivers, and patients alike.
 
 

General Information About Cancer

What Is Cancer?
Cancer occurs when cells in the body divide and grow abnormally.
 
Normally, cells throughout the body divide and grow as children's bodies develop, and as adult bodies replace old or injured cells. During this methodical system, new cells form, grow, and stop growing at the appropriate time. When cancer occurs, cell growth becomes uncontrolled. Often, but not always, these cancer cells form into a solid mass called a tumor. Not all tumors are cancerous, however: cancerous tumors are called “malignant,” while non-cancerous tumors are known as “benign.” If the cancerous cells are blood cells, as in leukemia, there is no solid tumor. Early detection and treatment are very important to increasing the patient's chances of recovery.
 
Cancer can occur in many parts of the body, and can take many different forms. The various forms can behave very differently from one another--they may grow at differing rates, and respond to treatments inconsistently. Cancer can also spread to other parts of the body through the bloodstream or lymphatic system (this is called metastasis), but the original site of the cancerous cells determines the cancer type.
 
What Causes Cancer?
The unusual cell growth that brings about cancer is the result of damage to DNA -- the substance inside all cells that directs cell behavior. Damaged DNA can be caused by genetics, by behavior (such as smoking or diet), or by things in the environment (such as air pollutants, radiation or occupational exposure to certain chemicals). Usually, the body can repair damaged DNA, but cancer cells evade this natural process.
 
Treating Cancer
Cancer is traditionally treated using three types of therapy: surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy. Depending on the type of cancer and its stage (how far the cancer has progressed), your doctor may use one of these methods or a combination of them in order to achieve the best possible result.
 
Today, in addition to these three approaches, new and promising therapies for cancer are being developed and used. These new approaches include gene therapy and immunotherapy, and may offer new hope to those who have not benefited from conventional treatment methods.
 
The City of Hope Approach
City of Hope, one of just 41 NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers in the United States, is dedicated to the prevention, treatment and cure of many different types of cancer. City of Hope has a world-class staff of researchers and physicians who are constantly developing new approaches to treating cancer.Last year, City of Hope conducted more than 300 studies enrolling more than 5,000 patients.
 
In just one example of our leading-edge research, City of Hope is the first – and currently only – institution in the world to perform a clinical study using genetically-engineered T-cells to recognize and attack glioma, a highly lethal (and unfortunately, quite common) form of brain cancer. Learn more about our treatment approaches.
 
Cancer Prevention
Through painstaking effort and years of research, scientists have been able to identify many of the causes of cancer. Today, it is believed that about 75 percent of cancer cases are tied in some way to how we live our lives. Since our lifestyle does contribute to the risk of having cancer, prevention often depends on knowing as much as possible about our own risk factors. It’s important to remember that cancer prevention is an ongoing process.
 
  • Carefully identify lifestyle factors such as smoking, dietary habits, or occupational hazards that might contribute to your risk of developing cancer.
  • Think about which of these lifestyle risk factors you can control.
  • Begin to make simple changes in lifestyle that may help lower your cancer risk. These changes often involve choices that are made every day.
  • The American Cancer Society recommends a cancer-related checkup every three years for people between the ages of 20 to 39 and annually for people age 40 or older.

Additional Information and Resources
This website is designed to provide information about the advanced treatment services and leading biomedical research available at City of Hope.
 
For general information on all types of cancers, as well as cancer causes and prevention, the National Cancer Institute (www.cancer.gov) and American Cancer Society (www.cancer.org) are excellent sources.
 
Become a Patient
City of Hope is committed to making the process of becoming a patient here as easy as possible. Call 800-826-HOPE (4673) or complete the online appointment form.
 

Community Outreach

Community Outreach

As a Comprehensive Cancer Center, City of Hope plays an important role in the community. We continually use the knowledge gained from our ongoing research to influence the standards of prevention and care, and to educate physicians, caregivers, and patients alike.
 
 

General Information About Cancer

General Information About Cancer

What Is Cancer?
Cancer occurs when cells in the body divide and grow abnormally.
 
Normally, cells throughout the body divide and grow as children's bodies develop, and as adult bodies replace old or injured cells. During this methodical system, new cells form, grow, and stop growing at the appropriate time. When cancer occurs, cell growth becomes uncontrolled. Often, but not always, these cancer cells form into a solid mass called a tumor. Not all tumors are cancerous, however: cancerous tumors are called “malignant,” while non-cancerous tumors are known as “benign.” If the cancerous cells are blood cells, as in leukemia, there is no solid tumor. Early detection and treatment are very important to increasing the patient's chances of recovery.
 
Cancer can occur in many parts of the body, and can take many different forms. The various forms can behave very differently from one another--they may grow at differing rates, and respond to treatments inconsistently. Cancer can also spread to other parts of the body through the bloodstream or lymphatic system (this is called metastasis), but the original site of the cancerous cells determines the cancer type.
 
What Causes Cancer?
The unusual cell growth that brings about cancer is the result of damage to DNA -- the substance inside all cells that directs cell behavior. Damaged DNA can be caused by genetics, by behavior (such as smoking or diet), or by things in the environment (such as air pollutants, radiation or occupational exposure to certain chemicals). Usually, the body can repair damaged DNA, but cancer cells evade this natural process.
 
Treating Cancer
Cancer is traditionally treated using three types of therapy: surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy. Depending on the type of cancer and its stage (how far the cancer has progressed), your doctor may use one of these methods or a combination of them in order to achieve the best possible result.
 
Today, in addition to these three approaches, new and promising therapies for cancer are being developed and used. These new approaches include gene therapy and immunotherapy, and may offer new hope to those who have not benefited from conventional treatment methods.
 
The City of Hope Approach
City of Hope, one of just 41 NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers in the United States, is dedicated to the prevention, treatment and cure of many different types of cancer. City of Hope has a world-class staff of researchers and physicians who are constantly developing new approaches to treating cancer.Last year, City of Hope conducted more than 300 studies enrolling more than 5,000 patients.
 
In just one example of our leading-edge research, City of Hope is the first – and currently only – institution in the world to perform a clinical study using genetically-engineered T-cells to recognize and attack glioma, a highly lethal (and unfortunately, quite common) form of brain cancer. Learn more about our treatment approaches.
 
Cancer Prevention
Through painstaking effort and years of research, scientists have been able to identify many of the causes of cancer. Today, it is believed that about 75 percent of cancer cases are tied in some way to how we live our lives. Since our lifestyle does contribute to the risk of having cancer, prevention often depends on knowing as much as possible about our own risk factors. It’s important to remember that cancer prevention is an ongoing process.
 
  • Carefully identify lifestyle factors such as smoking, dietary habits, or occupational hazards that might contribute to your risk of developing cancer.
  • Think about which of these lifestyle risk factors you can control.
  • Begin to make simple changes in lifestyle that may help lower your cancer risk. These changes often involve choices that are made every day.
  • The American Cancer Society recommends a cancer-related checkup every three years for people between the ages of 20 to 39 and annually for people age 40 or older.

Additional Information and Resources
This website is designed to provide information about the advanced treatment services and leading biomedical research available at City of Hope.
 
For general information on all types of cancers, as well as cancer causes and prevention, the National Cancer Institute (www.cancer.gov) and American Cancer Society (www.cancer.org) are excellent sources.
 
Become a Patient
City of Hope is committed to making the process of becoming a patient here as easy as possible. Call 800-826-HOPE (4673) or complete the online appointment form.
 
Cancer Information
Find out more about cancer and how it develops, including risk factors, early detection, diagnosis, prevention and treatment. You can also find additional resources, statistics and a glossary from the National Cancer Institute and the American Cancer Society that may help in your search for more information about cancer.
Discover the wide range of progressive cancer treatment options at City of Hope designed to meet the individual needs of each patient. Here, medical research and clinical care are integrated, speeding the application of scientific discoveries toward better, more effective patient cancer treatments.
Only a National Cancer Institute (NCI)-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center such as City of Hope offers a full complement of services designed to address all aspects of cancer, from understanding its origins to developing new therapies.
NCICCC
Community Outreach
As a Comprehensive Cancer Center, City of Hope plays an important role in the community. We continually use the knowledge gained from our ongoing research to influence the standards of prevention and care, and to educate physicians, caregivers, and patients alike.
 
    CCARE - Center of Community Alliance for Research and Education

    Sitio web de City of Hope en español - City of Hope Spanish-language website
 


NEWS & UPDATES
  • Valentine’s Day is synonymous with dinner reservations, red roses, heart-shaped boxes of chocolates and — more often than not — unrealistically high expectations. Managing those expectations is great advice for all couples on Feb. 14 — and is especially important for couples confronting a cancer diagnosis. Focu...
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  • It’s been more than a century since Nobel Laureate Paul Ehrlich popularized the idea of a “magic bullet” targeting disease. Cancer researchers ever since have remained in hot pursuit of targeted therapies that home in on cancer cells while leaving normal cells unaffected. Linda Malkas, Ph.D., associate chair of...
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  • Michele Dahlstein, a 50-year-old breast cancer survivor from Upland, California, celebrated her last day of chemotherapy on Dec. 30. She shares her story in her own words: I was diagnosed with breast cancer (invasive ductal carcinoma stage 2) on Aug. 11, 2014, after my yearly mammogram at City of Hope’s W...
  • The treatment of urologic cancers, including bladder cancer, is rapidly evolving. Here, urologic oncologic surgeon and kidney stone specialist Donald Hannoun, M.D., an assistant clinical professor in the Division of Urology and Urologic Oncology at City of Hope | Antelope Valley, explains the changes in hi...
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  • California health officials are opting to be safe rather than sorry when it comes to e-cigarettes. The increasingly popular devices are a public health threat, according to a California Department of Health report released Jan. 28. The department is seeking statewide regulation of e-cigarettes, saying they  emi...
  • “Not beyond us.” On World Cancer Day, researchers and caregivers around the globe are embracing this refrain. Specifically, the day calls for action to support healthier lifestyles, early cancer detection, quality of life and access to care. In a time of impressive scientific discovery and narrowing...
  • With more advanced cancer treatments and therapies saving lives every day, it’s safe to say cancer is “Not beyond us,” the official tagline for this year’s World Cancer Day. This year’s World Cancer Day observance takes place on Wednesday, Feb. 4, and focuses on cancer prevention, detection an...
  • Does our environment increase our risk of cancer? What about plastic bottles, radiation, chemicals, soy products …? Do they cause cancer? With so many cancer fears, rumors and downright urban legends circulating among our friends and colleagues, not to mention in the media and blogosphere, why not ask the...
  • With this week’s World Cancer Day challenging us to think about cancer on a global scale, we should also keep in mind that daily choices affect cancer risk on an individual scale. Simply put, lifestyle changes and everyday actions can reduce your cancer risk and perhaps prevent some cancers. According to ...
  • If you haven’t heard the term “precision medicine,” you will. If you don’t have an opinion about access to it, you will. On Friday, President Barack Obama unveiled details of the Precision Medicine Initiative, an effort intended to accelerate cancer research in a powerful way, giving doctors new knowledge and n...
  • The lack of a practical way to produce and store enough stem cells for larger-scale therapies and clinical trials is creating a bottleneck in stem cell research. A new grant to City of Hope from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) will help solve that problem. The $899,728 grant, awarded T...