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Clinical Trials for Esophageal Cancer Patients
Doctors and scientists at the Johns Hopkins Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center have helped to advance the world’s understanding and approaches to esophageal cancer for more than 20 years. We continue to push progress even further with ongoing research and clinical trials for treating esophageal cancer. Our researchers are exploring new frontiers and promising approaches, such as immunotherapy, to treat esophageal cancer.
Esophageal Cancer Research at Johns Hopkins
At Johns Hopkins, medical oncologists (doctors who specialize in chemotherapy and other treatments for cancer) are conducting esophageal cancer research and clinical trials that promise new hope, including:
- Large-scale research on immunotherapy: Our medical oncologists are leading the largest-ever study of immunotherapy given after chemoradiation and surgery. This technique holds promise for patients who have completed surgery for esophageal cancer but still have detectable cancer cells in the body or lymph nodes.
- Biomarkers and chemotherapy: Our cancer researchers have already published new research on personalized chemotherapy and are now studying its applications. By identifying genetic biomarkers that determine how a patient will respond to chemotherapy, clinicians can prescribe a course of chemotherapy that is more likely to work for patients with those biomarkers.
- HER2 protein research for esophageal cancer: Researchers have found that approximately 15-20% of patients with esophageal cancer have HER2 genes that make too many HER2 proteins. Our standard practice now is to assess the HER2 status of all patients with metastatic esophageal cancer. We are also investigating new ways to target HER2 proteins in treatment.
- Small molecule drug research: Small molecule drugs block the spread of cancer by interfering with specific molecules involved in tumor growth. Our researchers are studying the effectiveness of this type of drug therapy on HER2 proteins and other molecules present in esophageal cancer.
- Epigenetic therapy: Epigenetic therapy treats cancer not by killing cancer cells but by reprogramming their patterns of gene expression so that they lose their capacity for uncontrolled growth. By studying the epigenomes of cancer cells, researchers at Johns Hopkins hope to prescribe chemotherapy regimens for esophageal cancer that turn on the genes that fight cancer cells. Researchers are also looking at biomarkers on cancer cells to determine if patients have the kind of genes that would respond to this therapy.
Search for Esophageal Cancer Clinical Trials
View a list of our recent clinical trials in esophageal cancer.
Participating in Our Clinical Trials
At the Kimmel Cancer Center, we recognize that esophageal cancer is a complex disease, and each patient is unique. To ensure that you receive treatment recommendations that are tailored precisely to your diagnosis, we request that those who are interested in one of our clinical trials, and who are not already a patient at the Kimmel Cancer Center, schedule a new patient consultation. To do this, please call 410-955-8964, and select option 2.
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