NCI Cancer Bulletin: A Trusted Source for Cancer Research NewsNCI Cancer Bulletin: A Trusted Source for Cancer Research News
June 20, 2006 • Volume 3 / Number 25 E-Mail This Document  |  Download PDF  |  Bulletin Archive/Search  |  Subscribe

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Cancer Center ProfileCancer Center Profile

University of North Carolina (UNC) Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center
Director: Dr. H. Shelton Earp • CB# 7295 Chapel Hill, NC 27599-7295 • Phone: 919-966-3036 • Web site:

University of North Carolina (UNC) Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center Background
UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center is a cancer center at one of the nation's premier public universities. The center, led by founding director Dr. Joseph S. Pagano, achieved NCI designation in 1975 and was awarded comprehensive status in 1990. Now under the direction of Dr. Shelton Earp, the center is the organizing structure for cancer care and research conducted by faculty in the College of Arts and Sciences and 12 professional schools, including Schools of Public Health and Medicine. Consequently, the 260 members come from and interact with diverse disciplines including psychology, physics, computer science, fundamental biology, genetics, and chemistry, as well as population, behavioral, statistical, and the clinical sciences. In this multifaceted environment, members hold over $170 million in annual research and training grants, including $48 million in NCI funding.

Patient Care
UNC Lineberger offers treatment for a wide range of cancers using a multidisciplinary team approach to patient care. The 13 multidisciplinary programs include all major adult and pediatric solid and hematologic malignancies. About 2,500 new cancer patients are diagnosed each year. Patients from all 100 North Carolina counties make 95,000 outpatient visits annually. Patients have access to a wide range of support services including a resource center, patient counselors, and support groups. Construction is underway on the NC Cancer Hospital, funded by a $180 million bond issue provided by the North Carolina Legislature. With an estimated completion date of 2009, the new facility will greatly enhance all facets of patient care and clinical research, including prevention activities for patients' family members.

Research Activities
UNC Lineberger's mission is to reduce cancer incidence, morbidity, and mortality in North Carolina and the nation through research, treatment, training, and outreach. The Center emphasizes interdisciplinary basic, clinical, and translational cancer research and a population sciences program spanning epidemiology, early detection, prevention, and behavioral science. An emphasis on clinical research faculty recruitment across multiple departments has led to a wide range of investigator-initiated clinical trials.

Other Notable Programs
UNC Lineberger holds Specialized Programs of Research Excellence in breast and gastrointestinal cancers, is a Department of Defense Prostate Cancer Center of Excellence, and was recently awarded a Center for Cancer Nanotechnology Excellence grant. Cancer Center faculty also direct the CDC coordinating center for the Cancer Prevention and Control Research Network, large population-based case-control studies, and 14 P01 grants.

UNC Lineberger outreach activities extend across North Carolina to increase cancer prevention and screening activities through partnerships with community leaders, businesses, and government agencies. The Center has special research expertise in medically underserved populations and health disparities, as well as an emerging strength in molecular studies of racial differences in breast, colon, and prostate cancers.