Patients and Survivors Program

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Director

Patricia Ganz, M.D.

Contact via email

Co-Director

Julienne Bower,Ph.D.

Contact via email

Overview

The Patients and Survivors Program investigates methods of measuring and improving quality of life and quality of cancer care. Its prevention and control research targets are patients receiving treatment for cancer and post-treatment cancer survivors. Research includes behavioral intervention research, assessment of quality of life and other health care outcomes, nutritional intervention research and symptom control research. Policy relevant research related to quality of care is also included.

Goals

  1. Reduce avoidable morbidity and mortality among patients with cancer and long-term survivors of cancer
  2. Understand and improve quality of life outcomes along the developmental phases of the life span continuum (e.g., infants, children, young adult survivors, adult cancer patients and survivors and elderly cancer patients and survivors), including late medical and psychosocial effects
  3. Develop and improve methods of measuring and evaluating the quality of cancer care

Meetings and Events

  • Monthly research conferences and brown bag seminars in collaboration with the School of Public Health
  • Postdoctoral fellows’ journal club
  • Research-in-progress meetings with fellows
  • Monthly tea for program area members and staff with UCLA Center for Cancer Prevention and Control Research
  • Regular meetings on psychoneuroimmunology and cancer for investigators to present their work in progress
  • Focused retreats on interdisciplinary and translational topics with other cancer center programs

Leadership

Patricia A. Ganz, M.D., director of the Patient and Survivors Program, is a board-certified medical oncologist who has been conducting psychosocial and quality of life research with cancer patients and survivors since the early 1980s. Ganz holds professorial appointments in the School of Public Health (Health Policy & Management) and the School of Medicine (Medicine/Hematology-Oncology). Ganz is a pioneer in the assessment of quality of life in cancer patients, and is active in clinical trials research with the NRG Oncology, where she co-chairs the Patient Centered Outcomes Research committee. She has focused much of her clinical and research efforts in the areas of breast cancer and its prevention. She also directs the UCLA Clinical Cancer Genetic Evaluation Program. Her other major areas of research include cancer survivorship and late effects of cancer treatment, cancer in the elderly and quality of care for cancer patients. She is Deputy Editor of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute and Associate Editor of CA-A Journal for Clinicians. Dr. Ganz was elected to the Institute of Medicine in 2007, and received the American Cancer Society Medal of Honor in 2010. She served on the National Cancer Institute Board of Scientific Advisors from 2002-2007 and on the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Board of Directors from 2003-2006. Dr. Ganz currently serves as Vice Chair of the Institute of Medicine National Cancer Policy Forum and chaired the 2013 Institute of Medicine consensus study whose report was entitled “Delivering High Quality Cancer Care: Charting a New Course for a System in Crisis.”

Co-director Julienne Bower, Ph.D., is professor of Psychology and Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, and Research Scientist of the Cousins Center for Psychoneuroimmunology at the UCLA Semel Institute for Neuroscience. Bower’s research is focused on understanding the biobehavioral mechanisms underlying fatigue and other behavioral disturbances in cancer patients and survivors, and has done pioneering work on inflammation and cancer-related fatigue.  She is also actively involved in designing and conducting interventions for cancer patients and survivors, including trials of mind-body therapies.  In July 2016, Bower was appointed to the George F. Solomon Professorship of Psychobiology. In collaboration with the Norman Cousins Center for Psychoneuroimmunology at UCLA, she leads the effort to develop innovative programs in evidence-based behavioral approaches to prevent disease, promote healing and enhance overall well-being in patients and survivors of cancer.

Upcoming Events

The following list is for upcoming events and seminars of notable interest to the Patients and Survivors Program and its members. This calendar is updated automatically.

For a list of all upcoming JCCC events (including other research programs, patients and survivors, and the UCLA Jonsson Cancer Center Foundation), please visit the Events Calendar.

Insights into Cancer: Diagnosis and Treatment of Neuroendocrine Tumors

Once a month, the Simms/Mann–UCLA Center for Integrative Oncology presents Insights Into Cancer, a free public lecture series for cancer patients, their families and the community. Each lecture features a leading professional who provides up-to-date information, practical advice and answers to cancer-related questions.

October 10, 2017

Diagnosis and Treatment of Neuroendocrine Tumors

Drs. Joseph Pisegna, J. Randolph Hecht, Ken Herrmann and Timothy R. Donahue discuss neuroendocrine tumors (NETS) which include both carcinoid tumors and pancreatic islet cell tumors.  The latest research and clinical interventions including imaging and diagnosis, staging and the role of hormonal, chemotherapy and targeted treatment approaches.  The interdisciplinary discussion illustrates the importance of an evidence based driven integrated interdisciplinary team approach for best outcomes for patients with NETS.

Schedule
6:45 – 7:00: Arrival & Refreshments
7:00 – 7:15: Anne Coscarelli, Ph.D, Introduction to Center
7:15 – 7:20: Anne Coscarelli, Ph.D., Speaker Introduction
7:20 – 8:55: Speaker Presentation, Q&A
8:55 – 9:00: Closing

Joseph Pisegna, M.D., is a Professor of Medicine Professor of Medicine and Human Genetics at UCLA and Chief of the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology at the VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System. Dr. Pisegna is interested in the molecular pharmacology of hormones and receptors in the gastrointestinal tract, especially the diagnosis and management of islet cell tumors of the pancreas. His research and clinical interests derive from research in the biochemistry and physiology of neuroendocrine tumors. His addition to the faculty of the UCLA Center for Pancreatic Diseases provides unsurpassed expertise in the diagnosis and medical management of pancreatic endocrine tumors.

Timothy R. Donahue, M.D., is an Associate Professor of Surgery and Molecular & Medical Pharmacology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.  He is the Director of the Pancreatic Translational Program at the UCLA Institute for Molecular Medicine.  His clinical practice is focused on pancreatic surgery, and his research program examines the molecular genetics of pancreatic cancer.

J. Randolph Hecht, M.D., is a Professor of Clinical Medicine in the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA School of Medicine. He holds the Carol and Saul Rosenzweig Chair for Cancer Therapies Development and is the Director of the UCLA Gastrointestinal Oncology Program. Dr. Hecht is an internationally known clinical and translational researcher in the field of gastrointestinal cancers. He has published widely on the molecular biology, early detection, and treatment of gastrointestinal malignancies.

Ken Herrmann, M.D., is an Associate Professor in the Department of Molecular and Medical Pharmacology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.  He graduated from Charité in Berlin (Germany) in 2004 and was trained in nuclear medicine in Munich. He has been at UCLA since 2011. In addition, he serves as Chair of Nuclear Medicine at Universitätsklinikum Essen, Germany. His research focuses on radionuclide theranostics especially in neuroendocrine tumors.


Insights Into Cancer lectures are held in the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center Auditorium, B Level, Room B130, 757 Westwood Plaza, Los Angeles, CA 90095.

UCLA parking is $12 and is wheelchair accessible. Attendees can park in the medical plaza, or take advantage of the valet parking at the front of Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center.

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