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.