City of Hope Hospital Launches New Institute Devoted to Blood Disorders

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Already a leader in the field of stem cell transplants, the Los Angeles area hospital's commitment to blood disorders grows even bigger with this announcement.

City of Hope is launching the Hematologic Malignancies and Stem Cell Transplantation Institute to focus specifically on understanding and treating people with lymphoma, leukemia and myeloma, along with other serious blood and bone marrow diseases.

The institute is being created on a foundation established by City of Hope’s Stephen J. Forman, M.D., the Francis and Kathleen McNamara Distinguished Chair in Hematology and Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation at City of Hope, and the leader of the institution’s Hematologic Malignancies Program, and Steven T. Rosen, M.D., the provost and chief scientific officer at City of Hope. Both Forman and Rosen have worldwide reputations for vision, discipline and compassion with regard to the people afflicted with these diseases and they are committed to continuing to make scientific breakthroughs while caring for patients in City of Hope's patient-centered environment.

"Over the years we have seen the development of therapies that, had we known then what we know now, could have saved more lives," said Forman in a press release. "The institute will create a collaborative culture of research and individualized care that will accelerate our research breakthroughs for the patients and families who come to us for help."

The institute will be composed of six cornerstone centers (two so far named), each committed to research focused on:

  • Lymphoma ("The Toni Stephenson Lymphoma Center")
  • Leukemia ("The Gehr Family Center for Leukemia Research")
  • Myeloma
  • T-cell immunotherapy
  • Stem cell transplantation
  • Gene therapy

"City of Hope has already developed a number of new treatment approaches that are now followed by cancer specialists worldwide," added Rosen. "We are known for being the only center to achieve superior survival outcomes for our transplant patients for nine consecutive years. With the institute, we will be able to do even more for those patients."

The move to institute status has already led to the recruitment of several internationally recognized clinical and scientific leaders to City of Hope, including Larry W. Kwak, M.D., Ph.D, chairman of the Department of Lymphoma/Myeloma at MD Anderson Cancer Center and associate director of its Center for Cancer Immunology Research; Jasmine Zain, M.D., associate director for the Bone Marrow Transplantation Program at the College of Physicians and Surgeons at the New York Presbyterian Hospital, Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center at Columbia University; John Chan, M.D., co-director of the Center for Leukemia and Lymphoma Research and co-leader of the Lymphoma Research Program at the University of Nebraska; Guido Marcucci, M.D., professor of Internal Medicine and Molecular Virology, Immunology and Medical Genetics, and Pharmaceutics in the Division of Hematology at Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center; and Christiane Querfeld, M.D., Ph.D., dermatopathologist/lymphoma specialist at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.

The institute is currently launching several T cell immunotherapy clinical trials for treatment of leukemia and lymphoma, with others being developed for myeloma and novel transplant studies to improve the cure rate for people who need this therapy.

"The institute’s launch is a reflection of City of Hope’s commitment to research and care that changes lives," said City of Hope’s president and CEO, Robert W. Stone. "The choice of Dr. Forman to lead the institute is a reflection of his remarkable contributions to the field of hematologic malignancies."

Adapted from original press release.

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