The Hematology and Medical Oncology Division focuses on three major categories of research: clinical trials, laboratory-based basic research and laboratory-based translational work. A particular emphasis on translational patient-oriented research allows patients involved in clinical trials to benefit earlier from bench observations. This approach facilitates advances in personalized medicine where, for example, molecular markers found in the laboratory examination of tissue predict outcomes that help determine the type of chemotherapy that should be given to an individual patient.
Basic research studies within the division are aimed at understanding the molecular basis of human blood diseases and cancer. These include programs in basic cancer biology and genetics focusing on solid tumor cancers such as lung cancer, prostate cancer and kidney cancers, as well as acute and chronic leukemias, lymphomas, myelodysplastic syndromes and myeloma, developmental biology (including angiogenesis, stem cell biology, and cardiac development), vascular biology (including atherosclerosis, the tumor vascular bed and thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura) and basic mechanisms of resistance to chemotherapy.
Translational research includes research projects concerning leukemia, lymphoma, multiple myeloma, prostate cancer, lung cancer, breast cancer, gastrointestinal cancers, thrombosis, bone marrow/stem cell transplantation and tumor immunology. Clinical trials conducted within the division are aimed at testing new therapies in patients with cancer and blood diseases, allowing our patients to receive agents that are not widely available in the community.
Our research is supported by a large number of grants from the National Institutes of Health (including the National Cancer Institute, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, and the National Institute of Neurological Diseases and Stroke), the American Cancer Society, the Department of Defense, the American Society of Hematology, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of America, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Prostate Cancer Foundation, the Jimmy V Foundation, the American Foundation for AIDS Research, and many pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies.
In FY15, the Hematology and Medical Oncology Division received more than $18 million for cancer and blood disease research. These awards funded more than 120 active research projects.