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Thoracic (Lung) Cancer Clinical Research and Trials

  • Clinical research plays an essential role in the mission of the Lowe Center for Thoracic Oncology. Our center has played a leading role in lung cancer research over the past decade, helping to introduce a new era of personalized medicine for the treatment of lung cancer. A strategy of personalized therapy permeates our research, with intelligently designed clinical trials supported by laboratory research and studies of cancer genetics.

    The Lowe Center prides itself on offering cutting-edge clinical research. Our clinical trials are developed with the aim of identifying the most promising new cancer drugs and delivering them to the patients most likely to benefit from them. Many of these trials study "targeted therapies," which are drugs that act on unique characteristics of cancer cells and often have milder side effects compared to conventional chemotherapy. Other trials study new drug combinations, with the hope of overcoming drug resistance.

    Personalized cancer therapy requires a detailed understanding of cancer genetics. By studying tumor tissue, we can often identify genetic changes which fuel the cancer's growth. For example, through collaborations with the Laboratory for Molecular Medicine, we routinely test lung adenocarcinoma for mutations in several important genes (including EGFR, KRAS, ALK, HER2, and BRAF) in order to select the best possible treatment strategy.

    Doctors in our Lowe Center are also researching familial lung cancer, lung cancer in non-smokers, improved management of drug side-effects, resistance to targeted therapies, improved management of brain metastases, and other related areas.

    Learn about a study on lung cancer risk in patients with inherited EGFR T790M mutations.