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Advances in Health and Medicine

Pitt Fights Cancer on Many Fronts


From better understanding how tumors develop to finding novel methods of treatment and prevention, Pitt has long been at the forefront of cancer research.

Hideho Okada studies brain tumors that develop slowly before they suddenly become aggressive. He’s testing a vaccine to prevent them. Read about new cancer vaccine research in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette


Robert Schoen researches early detection and prevention of colorectal cancer and used a novel approach to develop a vaccine against it—targeting tumors’ own cellular mechanisms rather than the human body’s immune response to tumors. Read about Schoen’s research in the Pitt Chronicle.

Olivera Finn directs Pitt’s Department of Immunology, where she investigates how the body’s own immune response might target cancerous tumors. She hopes to develop a vaccine for lung cancer. Read a Pitt Med article on Finn’s research (PDF).

Founded in 1985 and directed by Nancy Davidson, the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute (UPCI) researches new ways to prevent, detect, diagnose, and treat cancer while educating new scientists and clinicians. Read a Pitt Magazine story on Davidson.

Adam Brufsky directs the Comprehensive Breast Cancer Program of the UPMC Cancer Centers and the University of Pittsburgh. He manages approximately 30 clinical trials investigating breast cancer and its treatment. Read about Brufsky and breast cancer research at Pitt in Pitt Med (PDF).

In a landmark 1974 report on findings from two clinical studies, Bernard Fisher proved that less-invasive “lumpectomy” surgery treated breast cancer as effectively as disfiguring radical mastectomies.Pitt Med conversation with Fisher (PDF).