Gynecologic cancers and in particular ovarian cancer are a major health problem in the United States. The Gynecologic Cancers Program seeks to improve methods of prevention, diagnosis and treatment of gynecologic cancers with a particular focus on ovarian cancer. The Program addresses all aspects of the disease, including underlying biology, molecular pathways, diagnostics and eariy detection, novel therapeutic targets, and clinical trials.
The Specific Aims of the Gynecologic Cancers Program are: 1. To decipher the molecular events that are critical to the development of ovarian cancer, including testing whether a subset of ovarian cancers arise from the fallopian tube. 2. To discover and evaluate novel biomarkers (early detection, prognostic and predictive) in ovarian cancer and to understand their role in the biology of the disease. 3. To utilize molecular technologies to improve the care of women with ovarian cancer, by improving stratification of patients and identifying novel therapeutic targets to Individualize care. 4. To facilitate evaluation of novel therapeutic strategies in the treatment of gynecologic cancers through Phase l/ll clinical trials. The Gynecologic Cancers Program is a multidisciplinary and inter-institutional Program that includes clinical, translational and laboratory-based research efforts. The Program has 52 members representing five DF/HCC institutions. Members span the specialties of medicine, OB/GYN, pathology, surgery, epidemiology, dermatology and radiation oncology. In addition, Program members include basic scientists, molecular pathologists and population scientists. They represent seven departments within Harvard Medical School. The Program has been funded for 11 years and received an excellent score at the last renewal. In 2009, total funding within the Program was $9.4 million, of which $4.3 million is NCI funding and $520,000 is from other peer-reviewed sponsors. Members have published 620 papers in peer-reviewed joumals. Of these, 24% represent Intra-programmatic collaborations, 40% represent inter-programmatic collaborations, and over 21% represent inter-institutional collaborations.

Public Health Relevance

Gynecologic cancers remain a major health problem in this country. In 2010, over 80,000 women will be diagnosed with a gynecologic cancer resulting in approximately 28,000 deaths. A disproportionate number of these deaths (14.000) result from ovarian cancer. This Program seeks to develop better strategies to detect diagnosis and treat women with these cancers. As a result, these efforts should improve both the survival and quality of life of women with gynecologic cancers.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Center Core Grants (P30)
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Subcommittee G - Education (NCI)
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Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
United States
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