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Craig A. Bunnell, MD, MPH, MBA


Medical Oncology

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Physician

  • Chief Medical Officer
  • Institute Physician
  • Assistant Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School

Centers/Programs

Clinical Interests

  • Breast cancer, Quality of life, Symptom control

Contact Information

  • Appointments617-632-2175 (new)
    617-632-3800 (follow-up)
  • Office Phone Number617-632-3800
  • Fax617-632-1930

Bio

Dr. Bunnell received his MD from Harvard Medical School and his MPH from Harvard School of Public Health in 1990. He received his MBA from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2008. He completed his residency in internal medicine and a fellowship in hematology and oncology at Brigham and Women's Hospital, where he also served as chief medical resident. He joined Dana-Farber in 1996, and is a member of the Breast Oncology Center in the Susan F. Smith Center for Women's Cancers. Dr. Bunnell was named Dana-Farber's Chief Medical Officer in 2012.

Board Certification:

  • Medical Oncology

Fellowship:

  • Brigham and Women's Hospital, Hematology & Oncology

Residency:

  • Brigham and Women's Hospital, Internal Medicine

Medical School:

  • Harvard Medical School

Recent Awards:

  • Bass Scholar 2000

Research

Novel Agents and Treatment Regimens for Breast Cancer

Our group has sought to advance the treatment of women with breast cancer through basic laboratory research, clinical trials, and correlative studies. We have conducted clinical treatment studies investigating the use of novel agents, innovative schedules, and combinations of established agents. Our group was the first to investigate the combination of trastuzumab and vinorelbine - a highly active and now standard therapy for women with HER2-positive advanced breast cancer. This combination is currently being investigated in the neoadjuvant, adjuvant, and metastatic settings. We also conducted some of the early trials of weekly taxane therapy. In the neoadjuvant setting, we have investigated various agents and combination regimens, including weekly trastuzumab with taxanes, vinorelbine, and letrozole. In addition, we studied novel intravenous agents such as the epothilone analogs, CCI-779, flavopiridol, and bevacizumab. Other clinical trials have investigated a number of new oral hormonal, chemotherapeutic, and biologic agents as well as their combinations, including ERA-923, UFT plus leucovorin, 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) plus eniluracil, oral vinorelbine, and OSI-776. To complement our treatment trials, we also have performed correlative basic science studies, which have sought to characterize HER2 signaling, assess markers of resistance, monitor response to therapy, and measure microscopic tumor burden. Other investigations have assessed patient compliance with oral chemotherapeutic regimens, evaluated patient attitudes and interest in participating in clinical trials, developed therapeutic agents and interventions to improve symptom control, and compared quality of life between various treatment options.

Phase I study of JAK1/2 inhibitor ruxolitinib with weekly paclitaxel for the treatment of HER2-negative metastatic breast cancer. Cancer Chemother Pharmacol. 2021 May; 87(5):673-679.
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Lessons from the front: designing and implementing clinical pathways by and for clinicians. Am J Manag Care. 2020 02; 26(2 Spec No.):SP57-SP59.
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A phase II study of ixabepilone and trastuzumab for metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer. Ann Oncol. 2013 Jul; 24(7):1841-1847.
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Developing a Novel Model to Improve Research and care for Cancer Survivors: a Feasibility Study. J Cancer Educ. 2019 04; 34(2):229-233.
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Clinical Impact of Second Opinion Radiology Consultation for Patients With Breast Cancer. J Am Coll Radiol. 2019 Jun; 16(6):814-823.
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Age and the Risk of Paclitaxel-Induced Neuropathy in Women with Early-Stage Breast Cancer (Alliance A151411): Results from 1,881 Patients from Cancer and Leukemia Group B (CALGB) 40101. Oncologist. 2019 05; 24(5):617-623.
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Impact of Genomic Assay Testing and Clinical Factors on Chemotherapy Use After Implementation of Standardized Testing Criteria. Oncologist. 2019 05; 24(5):595-602.
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Surgeon Variability and Factors Predicting for Reoperation Following Breast-Conserving Surgery. Ann Surg Oncol. 2018 Sep; 25(9):2573-2578.
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Implementation of Surgeon-Initiated Gene Expression Profile Testing (Onco type DX) Among Patients With Early-Stage Breast Cancer to Reduce Delays in Chemotherapy Initiation. J Oncol Pract. 2017 09; 13(9):e815-e820.
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Factors Associated With Delays in Chemotherapy Initiation Among Patients With Breast Cancer at a Comprehensive Cancer Center. J Natl Compr Canc Netw. 2016 12; 14(12):1519-1526.
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Teamwork and Electronic Health Record Implementation: A Case Study of Preserving Effective Communication and Mutual Trust in a Changing Environment. J Oncol Pract. 2016 11; 12(11):1075-1083.
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Variation in the use of granulocyte-colony stimulating factor for dose dense paclitaxel: A single institution retrospective study. Breast. 2016 Dec; 30:136-140.
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Implementation of a Breast/Reconstruction Surgery Coordinator to Reduce Preoperative Delays for Patients Undergoing Mastectomy With Immediate Reconstruction. J Oncol Pract. 2016 Mar; 12(3):e338-43.
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Variation in Additional Breast Imaging Orders and Impact on Surgical Wait Times at a Comprehensive Cancer Center. Ann Surg Oncol. 2015 Dec; 22 Suppl 3:S428-34.
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The Influence of Radiology Image Consultation in the Surgical Management of Breast Cancer Patients. Ann Surg Oncol. 2015 Oct; 22(10):3383-8.
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Using real time locating systems (RTLS) to redesign room allocation in an ambulatory cancer care setting. J Clin Oncol. 2014 Oct 20; 32(30_suppl):157.
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Characteristics of emergency department visits among non-admitted oncology patients. J Clin Oncol. 2014 Oct 20; 32(30_suppl):37.
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Standardizing coordination between surgical oncology and reconstructive surgery for breast cancer patients undergoing mastectomy with immediate reconstruction. J Clin Oncol. 2014 Oct 20; 32(30_suppl):110.
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Understanding process-of-care delays in surgical treatment of breast cancer at a comprehensive cancer center. Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2014 Nov; 148(1):125-33.
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Use of potassium concentrations as a quality-of-service metric for phlebotomists detects systematic preanalytical biases and facilitates their correction. Clin Chem. 2014 Nov; 60(11):1453-5.
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Measuring opportunities to improve timeliness of breast cancer care at Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women's Cancer Center. J Natl Compr Canc Netw. 2014 Feb; 12 Suppl 1:S5-9.
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Reducing breast cancer chemotherapy treatment delays by improving the transition from surgical to medical oncology. J Clin Oncol. 2013 Nov; 31(31_suppl):51.
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Disseminating team training across an academic cancer center and community-based satellites. J Clin Oncol. 2013 Nov; 31(31_suppl):188.
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A phase II study of ixabepilone and trastuzumab for metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer. Ann Oncol. 2013 Jul; 24(7):1841-1847.
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High performance teamwork training and systems redesign in outpatient oncology. BMJ Qual Saf. 2013 May; 22(5):405-13.
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Team training in adult oncology. J Clin Oncol. 2012 Dec; 30(34_suppl):27.
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Integrating value assessment into discussions about the price of cancer drugs. Mayo Clin Proc. 2012 Oct; 87(10):932-4.
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Ixabepilone-associated peripheral neuropathy: data from across the phase II and III clinical trials. Support Care Cancer. 2012 Nov; 20(11):2661-8.
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Long-term outcomes after neoadjuvant trastuzumab and chemotherapy for HER2+ breast cancer. J Clin Oncol. 2011 May 20; 29(15_suppl):e11074.
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Will we be able to care for cancer patients in the future? Oncology (Williston Park). 2010 Dec; 24(14):1343-8.
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Models of multidisciplinary cancer care: physician and patient perceptions in a comprehensive cancer center. J Oncol Pract. 2010 Nov; 6(6):283-8.
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Phase I trial of liposomal doxorubicin and ZD1839 in patients with refractory gynecological malignancies or metastatic breast cancer. Int J Clin Oncol. 2010 Aug; 15(4):390-8.
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Phase I/II study of ixabepilone plus capecitabine in anthracycline-pretreated/resistant and taxane-resistant metastatic breast cancer. Clin Breast Cancer. 2008 Jun; 8(3):234-41.
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Phase II clinical trial of ixabepilone (BMS-247550), an epothilone B analog, in patients with taxane-resistant metastatic breast cancer. J Clin Oncol. 2007 Aug 10; 25(23):3399-406.
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Phase II clinical trial of ixabepilone (BMS-247550), an epothilone B analog, as first-line therapy in patients with metastatic breast cancer previously treated with anthracycline chemotherapy. J Clin Oncol. 2007 Aug 10; 25(23):3415-20.
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Phase I/II trial in patients with metastatic breast cancer (MBC) previously treated with a taxane and an anthracycline: Final safety data. J Clin Oncol. 2006 Jun 20; 24(18_suppl):10528.
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Phase I trial of liposomal doxorubicin and ZD 1839 in patients with refractory gynecological malignancies or metastatic breast cancer. J Clin Oncol. 2006 Jun 20; 24(18_suppl):5085.
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Manageable safety profile in patients with taxane-resistant metastatic breast cancer (MBC) treated with ixabepilone: Final report. J Clin Oncol. 2006 Jun 20; 24(18_suppl):10587.
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Final efficacy results of a phase I/II trial of ixabepilone in combination with capecitabine in patients with metastatic breast cancer (MBC) previously treated with a taxane and an anthracycline. J Clin Oncol. 2006 Jun 20; 24(18_suppl):10511.
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Effects of a music therapy intervention on quality of life and distress in women with metastatic breast cancer. J Soc Integr Oncol. 2006; 4(3):116-24.
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Efficacy of pegfilgrastim and darbepoetin alfa as hematopoietic support for dose-dense every-2-week adjuvant breast cancer chemotherapy. J Clin Oncol. 2005 Nov 20; 23(33):8340-7.
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Assessment of a dietary questionnaire in cancer patients receiving cytotoxic chemotherapy. J Clin Oncol. 2005 Nov 20; 23(33):8453-60.
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Prospective evaluation of concurrent paclitaxel and radiation therapy after adjuvant doxorubicin and cyclophosphamide chemotherapy for Stage II or III breast cancer. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 2006 Feb 01; 64(2):496-504.
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Paroxetine is an effective treatment for hot flashes: results from a prospective randomized clinical trial. J Clin Oncol. 2005 Oct 01; 23(28):6919-30.
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Adjuvant ovarian suppression versus chemotherapy for premenopausal, hormone-responsive breast cancer: quality of life and efficacy tradeoffs. Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2005 Sep; 93(1):25-34.
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[Advances in sentinel node biopsy for breast cancer]. Gan To Kagaku Ryoho. 2004 Oct; 31(10):1601-7.
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Trastuzumab and vinorelbine as first-line therapy for HER2-overexpressing metastatic breast cancer: multicenter phase II trial with clinical outcomes, analysis of serum tumor markers as predictive factors, and cardiac surveillance algorithm. J Clin Oncol. 2003 Aug 01; 21(15):2889-95.
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Central nervous system metastases in women who receive trastuzumab-based therapy for metastatic breast carcinoma. Cancer. 2003 Jun 15; 97(12):2972-7.
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Preoperative therapy with trastuzumab and paclitaxel followed by sequential adjuvant doxorubicin/cyclophosphamide for HER2 overexpressing stage II or III breast cancer: a pilot study. J Clin Oncol. 2003 Jan 01; 21(1):46-53.
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Lumping versus splitting: the splitters take this round. J Clin Oncol. 2002 Sep 01; 20(17):3576-7.
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Phase I clinical trial of 7-cyanoquinocarcinol (DX-52-1) in adult patients with refractory solid malignancies. Cancer Chemother Pharmacol. 2001 Nov; 48(5):347-55.
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New cytotoxic agents and schedules for advanced breast cancer. Semin Oncol. 2001 Aug; 28(4):344-58.
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Clinical activity of trastuzumab and vinorelbine in women with HER2-overexpressing metastatic breast cancer. J Clin Oncol. 2001 May 15; 19(10):2722-30.
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Quality of life issues among women undergoing high-dose chemotherapy for breast cancer. Breast Dis. 2001; 14:41-50.
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Docetaxel administered on a weekly basis for metastatic breast cancer. J Clin Oncol. 2000 Mar; 18(6):1212-9.
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Double high-dose chemotherapy with stem cell rescue (HD-SCR) in patients with breast cancer - effect of sequence. Cancer Chemother Pharmacol. 2000; 45(3):239-46.
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Current perspectives for treatment of breast cancer. Breast Cancer. 2000; 7(4):380-8.
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The interval between courses of high-dose chemotherapy with stem cell rescue: therapeutic hypotheses. Bone Marrow Transplant. 1999 Nov; 24(9):939-45.
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Oral 5-FU analogues in the treatment of breast cancer. Oncology (Williston Park). 1998 Oct; 12(10 Suppl 7):39-43.
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A Phase I trial of ifosfamide and paclitaxel with granulocyte-colony stimulating factor in the treatment of patients with refractory solid tumors. Cancer. 1998 Feb 01; 82(3):561-6.
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The presence of membrane-bound stem cell factor on highly immature nonmetachromatic mast cells in the peripheral blood of a patient with aggressive systemic mastocytosis. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 1996 Oct; 98(4):831-40.
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