The Translational Oncology Program at Virginia Oncology Associates
Clinical trials are an important step in finding new and better ways of treating cancer. Virginia Oncology Associates is dedicated to advancing cancer care by leading and participating in many clinical trials that test the safety and efficiency of new or modified treatments in cancer patients. These cancer clinical trials are important because they help uncover new cancer treatment options, and give many of our patients the opportunity to receive newly developed treatments or investigational drugs not yet available outside the study.
Today, there are more cancer therapies in development than ever before. This dramatic increase means that for many patients, there is more hope for a favorable outcome in their battle with cancer. Our progressive oncologists and research team are proud to be a part of this effort, providing access to the latest therapies, right here in our community.
Now we are on the threshold of a new paradigm for cancer research – that of individualized treatment based on genomic and molecular predictors of an individual patient’s response. Through our collaboration with the National Cancer Institute Cooperative Groups, US Oncology, Eastern Virginia Medical School, the Duke Oncology Network, and other major cancer centers, we are investigating ways to use molecular profiling to tailor treatment management. Virginia Oncology Associates also participates in clinical trials through Sarah Cannon Research Institute (SCRI), a joint venture with US Oncology Research and one of the world’s leading oncology research organizations conducting community-based clinical trials. Focused on advancing therapies for patients over the last three decades, SCRI is a leader in drug development. It has conducted more than 600 first-in-human clinical trials since its inception and contributed to pivotal research that has led to the majority of new cancer therapies approved by the FDA today.
Targeted therapies are the direction of many major clinical trials. Such trials enable physicians to customize drug treatment for a particular cancer by focusing on a precise target at the molecular level of a patient’s tumor. The tumor is analyzed to determine how it grows and differs from other cancers in the same diagnosis.
We can quickly bring the latest advances in cancer care to our patients and are able to provide them with access to the latest clinical trials involving new investigational cancer agents. Not only does this advance cancer treatment, but it gives many of our patients the opportunity to receive promising new therapies or investigational drugs not yet available to patients outside the studies.