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Gynecologic Cancers Clinical Trials and Research

In City of Hope’s Gynecologic Oncology Program, physicians collaborate extensively with laboratory scientists to develop and evaluate new therapies designed to treat gynecologic cancers and improve the likelihood of cure. Many of these new treatment approaches are only available at City of Hope. As a patient here, you may qualify to participate in a clinical trial of one of these new therapies. We offer access to a wide variety of clinical trials, including new chemotherapy and targeted therapies, hormone therapies, and surgical approaches to treating gynecologic cancers.
 
 
We are also deeply invested in research to better understand gynecologic cancers, the well-being of patients, and the needs of patients and their family members.
 
Some of the research questions we strive to answer include:
  • Why is there often a rapid and diffuse spreading of cancers from primary gynecologic malignancy sites?
  • Why are some cancers resistant to chemotherapy?
  • What are the potential long-term side effects for cancer survivors and how can we prevent or minimize them?
  • How can treatment of sexual dysfunction be addressed both physically and psychologically?
  • How can the use of psychotherapeutic interventions play a larger role in helping women cope emotionally during and after treatment?
 
Some of our most exciting current research projects include:
 
  • Evaluating expression patterns of genes and potential protein targets from individual patient’s cancer stem cells.
  • Characterizing circulating tumor cells in patients with locally advanced and metastatic disease.
  • Decoding mechanisms of resistance to therapeutic agents.
  • Identifying and interfering with unfavorable activations of genes and transcriptional and signal transduction pathways by studying microRNAs and a host of epigenetic modulatory components.
  • Developing novel therapeutics to treat metastasis.
  • Studying the role of STAT3, a protein highly activated in cancer cells, and developing drugs that block the tumor-regulating protein.
  • Examining the role of PARP inhibitors, a class of drugs that block a cancer cell’s ability to repair DNA damage caused by chemotherapy and radiation therapies. These drugs could make those treatments more effective.
  • Studying a modified version of a PET scan that utilizes a special imaging agent to identify cervical cancer.
  •  Improving counseling and other support services for women at high risk of developing cancer who make the difficult decision to undergo preventative oophorectomies.
  • Developing educational programs focused on the impact of HPV vaccination to reduce the risk of cervical cancer.
  • Studying survivorship with a focus on quality-of-life issues, prevention of secondary cancers, and other survivorship issues.
  • Determining the role of diet and exercise in preventing the recurrence of ovarian cancer.
  •  Evaluating ways to decrease long-term side effects of gynecologic surgery.

Gynecological Cancers Research/Clinical Trials

Gynecologic Cancers Clinical Trials and Research

In City of Hope’s Gynecologic Oncology Program, physicians collaborate extensively with laboratory scientists to develop and evaluate new therapies designed to treat gynecologic cancers and improve the likelihood of cure. Many of these new treatment approaches are only available at City of Hope. As a patient here, you may qualify to participate in a clinical trial of one of these new therapies. We offer access to a wide variety of clinical trials, including new chemotherapy and targeted therapies, hormone therapies, and surgical approaches to treating gynecologic cancers.
 
 
We are also deeply invested in research to better understand gynecologic cancers, the well-being of patients, and the needs of patients and their family members.
 
Some of the research questions we strive to answer include:
  • Why is there often a rapid and diffuse spreading of cancers from primary gynecologic malignancy sites?
  • Why are some cancers resistant to chemotherapy?
  • What are the potential long-term side effects for cancer survivors and how can we prevent or minimize them?
  • How can treatment of sexual dysfunction be addressed both physically and psychologically?
  • How can the use of psychotherapeutic interventions play a larger role in helping women cope emotionally during and after treatment?
 
Some of our most exciting current research projects include:
 
  • Evaluating expression patterns of genes and potential protein targets from individual patient’s cancer stem cells.
  • Characterizing circulating tumor cells in patients with locally advanced and metastatic disease.
  • Decoding mechanisms of resistance to therapeutic agents.
  • Identifying and interfering with unfavorable activations of genes and transcriptional and signal transduction pathways by studying microRNAs and a host of epigenetic modulatory components.
  • Developing novel therapeutics to treat metastasis.
  • Studying the role of STAT3, a protein highly activated in cancer cells, and developing drugs that block the tumor-regulating protein.
  • Examining the role of PARP inhibitors, a class of drugs that block a cancer cell’s ability to repair DNA damage caused by chemotherapy and radiation therapies. These drugs could make those treatments more effective.
  • Studying a modified version of a PET scan that utilizes a special imaging agent to identify cervical cancer.
  •  Improving counseling and other support services for women at high risk of developing cancer who make the difficult decision to undergo preventative oophorectomies.
  • Developing educational programs focused on the impact of HPV vaccination to reduce the risk of cervical cancer.
  • Studying survivorship with a focus on quality-of-life issues, prevention of secondary cancers, and other survivorship issues.
  • Determining the role of diet and exercise in preventing the recurrence of ovarian cancer.
  •  Evaluating ways to decrease long-term side effects of gynecologic surgery.
Quick Links
Gynecological Cancers News
Cooper Finkel Women’s Health Center
Many gynecological cancer and breast cancer  services at City of Hope are provided at the Rita Cooper Finkel and J. William Finkel Women's Health Center. Here, women receive the highest quality care, whether seeking prevention and screening services or coping with a cancer diagnosis.
The Sheri & Les Biller Patient and Family Resource Center embodies the heart and soul of City of Hope’s mission to care for the whole person.
As an leader in cancer research, our goal is to bring the latest scientific findings into medical practice as quickly as possible.
Medical Minute
Listen to the Medical Minute Gynecological Cancers with
Dr. Robert J. Morgan, co-director of the City of Hope gynecological cancers program.
 
NEWS & UPDATES
  • Advanced age tops the list among breast cancer risk factor for women. Not far behind is family history and genetics. Two City of Hope researchers delving deep into these issues recently received important grants to advance their studies. Arti Hurria, M.D., director of the Cancer and Aging Research Program, and ...
  • City of Hope is extending the reach of its lifesaving mission well beyond U.S. borders. To that end, three distinguished City of Hope leaders visited China earlier this year to lay the foundation for the institution’s new International Medicine Program. The program is part of City of Hope’s strategi...
  • A hallmark of cancer is that it doesn’t always limit itself to a primary location. It spreads. Breast cancer and lung cancer in particular are prone to spread, or metastasize, to the brain. Often the brain metastasis isn’t discovered until years after the initial diagnosis, just when patients were beginning to ...
  • Blueberries, cinnamon, baikal scullcap, grape seed extract (and grape skin extract), mushrooms, barberry, pomegranates … all contain compounds with the potential to treat, or prevent, cancer. Scientists at City of Hope have found tantalizing evidence of this potential and are determined to explore it to t...
  • Most women who are treated for breast cancer with a mastectomy do not choose to undergo reconstructive surgery. The reasons for this, according to a recent JAMA Surgery study, vary. Nearly half say they do not want any additional surgery, while nearly 34 percent say breast cancer reconstruction simply isn’t imp...
  • The leading risk factor for breast cancer is simply being a woman. The second top risk factor is getting older. Obviously, these two factors cannot be controlled, which is why all women should be aware of their risk and how to minimize those risks. Many risk factors can be mitigated, and simple changes can lead...
  • All women are at some risk of developing the disease in their lifetimes, but breast cancer, like other cancers, has a disproportionate effect on minorities. Although white women have the highest incidence of breast cancer, African-American women have the highest breast cancer death rates of all racial and ethni...
  • First, the good news: HIV infections have dropped dramatically over the past 30 years. Doctors, researchers and health officials have made great strides in preventing and treating the disease, turning what was once a death sentence into, for some, a chronic condition. Now, the reality check: HIV is still a worl...
  • Screening for breast cancer has dramatically increased the number of cancers found before they cause symptoms – catching the disease when it is most treatable and curable. Mammograms, however, are not infallible. It’s important to conduct self-exams, and know the signs and symptoms that should be checked by a h...
  • Rob Darakjian was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia at just 19 years old. He began chemotherapy and was in and out of the hospital for four months. After his fourth round of treatment, he received a bone marrow transplantation from an anonymous donor. Today, he’s cancer free.   In his previ...
  • In a single day, former professional triathlete Lisa Birk learned she couldn’t have children and that she had breast cancer. “Where do you go from there?” she asks. For Birk, who swims three miles, runs 10 miles and cycles every day, the answer  ultimately was a decision to take control of her cancer care. Afte...
  • More and more people are surviving cancer, thanks to advanced cancer treatments and screening tools. Today there are nearly 14.5 million cancer survivors in the United States. But in up to 20 percent of cancer patients, the disease ultimately spreads to their brain. Each year, nearly 170,000 new cases of brain ...
  • Cancer cells are masters of survival. Despite excessive damage to their most basic workings and the constant vigilance of the body’s immune system, they manage to persevere. Much of this extraordinary ability to survive falls under the control of proteins bearing the name STAT, short for signal transducer and a...
  • One person receives the breast cancer diagnosis, but the cancer affects the entire family. Couples, in particular, can find the diagnosis and treatment challenging, especially if they have traditional male/female communication styles. “Though every individual is unique, men and women often respond differently d...
  • Here’s a statistic you’ll hear and read frequently over the next month: One in eight women born in the United States will develop breast cancer at some point in her lifetime. Although this statement is accurate, based on breast cancer incidence rates in 2013, it’s often misunderstood. Leslie Bernstein, Ph.D., d...