All Temple radiation oncology faculty engage in medical research, much of it in collaboration with other faculty at Temple as well as large national and international research groups.
Basic research involves understanding how radiation impacts healthy cells and cancer cells. Most of the research is practical — aimed at improving current therapies and creating completely new therapies, particularly in the areas of breast and brain cancers.
For example, Temple researchers are testing the combined effect of selective growth inhibitors in conjunction with radiation therapy in Glioblastoma multiforme brain tumors.
They are working on the discovery of a panel of novel genetic markers which may diagnose metastasized breast cancers, and are developing a simple mouth rinse that might reduce the chance of the painful mouth sores that occur after some types of radiation therapy.
Physicists in the Department of Radiation Oncology conduct research in the following areas:
Integration of various imaging modalities in diagnosis, planning and treatment of localized diseases, with special interest in image guided radiation therapy (IGRT) of cancer using 3D-4D optical imaging, cone-beam CT, functional MRI and automatic image registration.
Patient-specific metabolic model and location-dependent motion mechanism in nuclear medicine imaging (PET and SPECT) for early detection and precise delineation of lung cancer.
Stereotactic radiosurgery and fractionated stereotactic radiotherapy of brain, lung, spine and liver tumors.
Biological models in treatment planning optimization, intensity modulated radiation therapy, thermal dose and hyper-thermal therapy techniques.
Dosimetry and techniques of molecular and gene therapy, as well as their combination with radiotherapy.
Many patients volunteer for clinical trials at Temple. This allows them to learn about — and sometimes receive — new therapies and understand that they are helping to create better therapies for future patients.
To further our goal of providing the widest range of treatment options and the highest quality of care for our patients, we participate in various Radiation Oncology Therapy Group (RTOG) and Gynecologic Oncology Group (GOG) clinical trials. These studies, sponsored by the National Cancer Institute, seek to improve the use of radiation therapy for the treatment of head and neck, lung, prostate, breast, ovarian and cervical cancers.
For more information about clinical trials, click here.