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Profile

The University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center was established in 1986 as a Center of Excellence at the University of Michigan Health System and received its comprehensive designation by the National Cancer Institute in 1988. The Center is committed to the conquest of cancer through innovation and collaboration between scientists and clinicians to achieve superior and compassionate patient care; scientific and technological innovation in cancer research, prevention, control, and treatment; and excellence in training cancer researchers and health care providers.

The opening of the nine-story Cancer Center building in May 1997 on the U-M Medical Center campus placed patient care and research side-by-side in the same building, facilitating communication between specialists and the quick transfer of research findings into the clinic. The building offers diagnostics, treatment, and support services dedicated to cancer patients under one roof, along with convenient parking.

Multidisciplinary clinics bring together in one setting all the experts needed to develop comprehensive diagnosis and treatment plans. In fact, the U-M Cancer Center has received national attention as a model for its tumor-based team approach to optimize coordination of care for both adult and pediatric patients. Working in teams and with colleagues in local communities throughout Michigan and at other leading centers in the country, Cancer Center physicians use an array of advanced methods to detect cancer early and treat it aggressively.

The Center offers a comprehensive range of supportive services, including a Patient Education Resource Center, Complementary Therapies, Nutrition Counseling, Child and Family Life Services, Art Therapy, Social Work Services, and more. Dedicated, highly trained professionals promote healing through these support services and are assisted by a team of volunteers, including many cancer survivors.

The Center has more than 350 physicians/researchers who receive about $79.5 million in grants each year from the National Institutes of Health and other agencies. In 2008, the UMCCC ranked third in research funding from the National Cancer Institute. Recent headlines about the innovative research efforts under way in the Cancer Center's 20 basic, clinical, and prevention research programs include:

First identification of stem cells in breast, pancreatic and head and neck tumors, a discovery that could lead to the development of new, more effective cancer treatments.

First identification of a recurring pattern of scrambled chromosomes and abnormal gene activity unique to prostate cancer.

Development of a simple urine test based on a panel of biomarkers that could provide a more accurate screening for prostate cancer than the current PSA test

Identification of a small molecule that blocks the protein p53 and could be an ideal candidate for new drug development .

Continuing researcher into the quality-of-life and satisfaction among women treated for breast cancer.

Development of Bexxar, FDA-approved, highly effective as first line treatment for patients with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

Studies to assess emotional support and quality of life for cancer caregivers.

Visit the Cancer Center web site at www.mcancer.org for more information.