NCI Cancer Bulletin: A Trusted Source for Cancer Research NewsNCI Cancer Bulletin: A Trusted Source for Cancer Research News
May 30, 2006 • Volume 3 / Number 22 E-Mail This Document  |  Download PDF  |  Bulletin Archive/Search  |  Subscribe

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Cancer Center ProfileCancer Center Profile

UC Davis Cancer Center
Director: Dr. Ralph deVere White • 4501 X Street, Sacramento, CA 95817 • Phone: 916-734-5800 • Web site:

UC Davis Cancer Center Background
UC Davis Cancer Center is a program of the University of California, Davis School of Medicine and Medical Center, one of five academic medical centers in the University of California system. UC Davis Cancer Center is the only NCI-designated Cancer Center serving California's Central Valley and northern inland counties, a region of six million people. The Cancer Center diagnoses more than 2,000 cancers, and treats more than 9,000 children and adults each year. Its cancer research program comprises 180 scientists at UC Davis and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, with $74 million in annual extramural research funding.

Patient Care
Patients are treated by multidisciplinary teams of surgical, medical, and radiation oncologists, as well as supportive care specialists such as genetic counselors, nutritionists, and social workers. Patients also have access to comprehensive medical care from experts in all medical disciplines. UC Davis Cancer Center is noted especially for its treatment of prostate and bladder cancers, head and neck cancer - especially skull base cancer - melanomas, surgical interventions for pancreatic cancer, experimental therapies for lung cancers, and treatment of leukemia and lymphomas.

The center participates in the Southwest Oncology Group, for which UC Davis is the top-accruing institution; Radiation Therapy Oncology Group; Children's Oncology Group; and the American College of Surgeons Oncology Group. The center also co-leads the NCI-supported California Cancer Consortium in phase I and phase II clinical trials - along with the City of Hope, the University of Southern California, and the University of Pittsburgh - and leads a multi-institutional investigation of simultaneous care in which patients with advanced disease are offered both palliation and participation in clinical trials.

Research Activities
In the first program of its kind, in 2001, UC Davis Cancer Center formed a research program with Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, emphasizing biomedical technology and cancer biology. UC Davis Cancer Center is known for its cancer biology in animals programs, drawing its strength from the renowned UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine. In basic science, the center is particularly active in the areas of DNA repair and tyrosine kinases. In therapeutics, the center is a national leader in combinatorial chemistry techniques for drug discovery and provides national leadership in correlative science. It also has the nation's oldest, continuous project in radioimmunotherapy. And in the field of prostate cancer research, the center has made significant progress evaluating apparent benefits of a soy derivative for chemoprevention, as well as gain-of-function studies of mutant p53.

Other Notable Programs
The UC Davis Cancer Center is home to the Asian American Network for Cancer Awareness, Research and Training, an NCI-funded program that researches cancer awareness among, and offers cancer-control training to, Asian American communities in major cities across the country. UC Davis Cancer Center is also developing novel materials for educating Native American women about breast cancer; these materials will eventually be available online and in DVD format. In addition, the center maintains an active patient education program that offers lectures, art therapy, fitness classes, and survivors' events.