Lung Cancer Research and Clinical Trials

In recent years, remarkable progress has been made in the battle against all types of cancer.  Researchers believe they are getting closer to techniques for earlier diagnosis, new therapies to stop the cancer’s spread, and possible curative treatments. 

At UC San Diego, scientific studies in lung cancer are particularly exciting, ranging from cancer genetics to basic biological insights. Our investigators are also exploring cancer prevention, the reduction of cancer disparities, tumor growth and metastasis, and control of symptoms. Some examples:

  • UC San Diego medical oncologists are working to find new mutations in tumors that can be treated with targeted therapy. In addition, we are working on ways to find tumor mutations using blood tests rather than biopsies.  
  • Our medical oncologists are also studying new targeted therapies that overcome resistance to widely available medications such as erlotinib, afatinib, or crizotinib.
  • Our medical oncologists are studying immunotherapies that stimulate and reprogram the immune system to fight cancer.
  • UC San Diego radiation oncologists are working on new ways to focus radiation and minimize toxicity and side effects. 

Clinical Trials

Clinical trials are strictly controlled human studies of new and emerging therapies or new and different ways of using known treatments.

Participation in a clinical trial gives you access to new treatments which could potentially become approved therapy down the line. By taking part in a clinical trial, you can be treated with a highly promising new drug that may not get final approval and wide distribution for some time.  Also, the participation in a clinical trial widens your choice of treatment for all possible scenarios, from early stages to advanced cancer. 

Through UC San Diego Health, you have access to clinical trials from the Cancer and Leukemia Group B (CALGB), the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG), and Southwestern Oncology Group (SWOG), as well as trials initiated by UC San Diego researchers and pharmaceutical companies.