John Theurer Cancer Center, part of Hackensack Meridian Health Hackensack University Medical Center and a leading cancer institution in the New York/New Jersey metro area, received approval from the National Cancer Institute as a research consortium member of the NCI-approved Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center Consortium.
“At Hackensack Meridian Health, we are committed to innovation across all aspects of health and health care, including how we research, treat and cure cancer,” said Robert C. Garrett, FACHE, CEO of Hackensack Meridian Health. “It is our hope that the work we will do through the consortium will benefit individuals not just in the New York/New Jersey metro areas, but also reduce the burden of cancer across the country.”
John Theurer Cancer Center is now a member of one of just 16 NCI-recognized cancer consortia based at the nation’s most prestigious institutions including Harvard University, Dana-Farber/ Harvard Cancer Center; Cleveland Clinic, part of the NCI-designated Case Comprehensive Cancer Center and the Mayo Clinic Cancer Center.
John Theurer Cancer Center’s collaboration with NCI-designated Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center enables both organizations to continue their research at the highest level to deliver tomorrow’s breakthroughs in cancer cures today. The consortium plans to advance research and innovate treatment in four key areas: Breast Cancer, Cancer Prevention and Control, Experimental Therapeutics and Molecular Oncology.
“Our relationship with Georgetown Lombardi is built on an ambitious research-driven agenda to improve cancer care and outcomes. We have worked together since 2013 with a common mission to prevent, treat, and cure cancers by linking scientific discovery, expert and compassionate patient care, quality education, and partnership with the community,” said Andrew L. Pecora, M.D., F.A.C.P., C.P.E., president of Physician Enterprise and chief innovations officer at Hackensack Meridian Health, professor of medicine and oncology at Georgetown University. “The NCI’s approval of the consortium represents the culmination of integrated research and collective talent and resources of two cancer centers. Collaborating with Georgetown Lombardi, a leading institution, allows us to use high-impact science to change both practice and policy.”
Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center Consortium members advance cancer research and innovate treatment for individuals in the New York, New Jersey and Washington, D.C. metro areas. The Consortium’s strategic objectives are to advance transformative cancer research; reduce the impact of cancer and diminish disparities in our catchment area; lead high-impact clinical research; ensure long-term growth, vibrancy and stability of the research enterprise; and develop the next generation of cancer scientists, clinicians and educators.
“We’ve aligned two very distinct institutions,” said Dr. Louis M. Weiner, M.D., director of the Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center and professor of medicine and oncology at Georgetown University. “Yet it is these differences that make us stronger. Our communities are made of unique populations, our researchers and physicians specialize in different areas, and our broader institutions bring a differentiated approach. Our research relationship with John Theurer Cancer Center has deepened our work in the key major areas of basic research, clinical research, population science, community outreach and engagement, and cancer research career enhancement. The combination of this deepening research relationship in New Jersey expands the impact our cancer center has on science and delivery of cancer care. Quite simply it allows us to provide tomorrow’s treatments today.”
Separated by distance but connected by commitment, these two unique organizations have united to advance innovation in research, treatment and advocacy in the fight against cancer in the United States.
John Theurer Cancer Center supports one of the largest bone marrow transplant (BMT) programs in the Northeast, performing well over 400 transplants annually. In 2014, John Theurer Cancer Center established a BMT program at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital/Georgetown Lombardi, expanding access to this life-saving treatment in the Washington, DC area. Together, the two cancer centers have also expanded research in CAR T-cell therapy, a revolutionary customized immunotherapy and invest in studies to assess other potential uses of this immunotherapy. John Theurer’s multiple myeloma program brings a new expertise to MedStar Georgetown/Georgetown Lombardi and to their patients who can benefit from advances in treatment.
With their substantial respective research bases, Georgetown Lombardi and John Theurer Cancer Center are together working to solve some of the biggest challenges in cancer today, including cancer disparities. The National Cancer Institute defines cancer disparities as certain groups bearing a disproportionate burden of cancer compared with other races, ethnicities, or population groups.
“This NCI consortium approval was based on a rigorous process that began in 2013, and was made possible thanks to hard work and commitment across both teams at Georgetown Lombardi and John Theurer Cancer Center,” said André Goy, MD, MS, chairman and executive director of John Theurer Cancer Center, professor of medicine at Georgetown University. “Through the consortium and its support, the National Cancer Institute seeks to expand its core mission of fostering cancer research and advancements that benefit patients across the country. Our work with Lombardi has already helped accelerate both programs particularly in bone marrow transplantation, cell therapy – including CAR-T cell therapy, immunotherapy and new drugs development. As research partners, we also want to take advantage of technology and data/analytics, to improve patients’ outcomes and reduce cancer burden across all communities.”
An important part of our work as part of the Consortium is to address and reduce cancer disparities,” said Ihor Sawczuk, M.D., regional president, northern market, Hackensack Meridian Health. “Programs like those under the newly formed ‘Community Outreach and Engagement Team’ and the Latino Cancer Disparities Center will help in these critical efforts.”
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