Moores Cancer Center

Quick Summary

Moores Cancer Center is an academic medical center that is affiliated with UC San Diego School of Medicine. Patients have access to new clinical trials by world-class researchers. These trials are trying to determine different methods of treating cancers like mesothelioma, and finding ways to make the current treatment options more effective, less toxic and with fewer side effects.

About Moores Cancer Center

Since it opened in 1978, the Moores Cancer Center at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) Health has been a National Cancer Institute-Designated Comprehensive Cancer Center. This designation is awarded to cancer centers that are committed to both clinical excellence and scientific innovation.

At Moores Cancer Center, researchers are continuously working to develop and test new therapies and surgeries to help improve patients’ health and wellbeing. Moores is the only NCI-Designated Cancer Center in the San Diego region.

In 2005, a new building opened up, which enabled researchers to work alongside experts who are more focused on patient care. Because of the center’s dedication to scientific innovation and clinical excellence, patients treated at NCI-Designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers often have better survival and recovery rates.

Moores Cancer Center Location and Overview

Here’s what patients interested in working with Moores Cancer Center should know about this mesothelioma treatment facility:

  • It’s an NCI-Designated Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • Their Clinical Trial Office oversees hundreds of trials across all types of cancers and all phases of drug development
  • Their multidisciplinary approach means patients are being seen by in multiple fields such as surgery, nutrition and diagnostic imaging a radiology
  • Hypothermic Intraperitoneal Chemotherapy (HIPEC) was developed here

The Moores Cancer Center is located at:

UC San Diego Health – La Jolla

Moores Cancer Center

3855 Health Sciences Drive

La Jolla, CA 92037

(858) 822-6100

Moores Cancer Center Patient Experience

One of the benefits of being treated at an NCI-Designated Comprehensive Cancer Center like Moores is that patients are treated from a multidisciplinary standpoint, using the knowledge and expertise of multiple specialists. Since 2005, these specialists all work out of the same building, which makes it easier for them to compare notes, talk about patient treatment options and review patient progress.

In addition to more standard specialties like medical oncology, surgery, radiation oncology, diagnostic imaging and radiology, patients are treated by specialists in psychology, nutrition, nursing and social work.

Moores Cancer Center understands the importance of family connections for patients who are undergoing treatment for mesothelioma. This is why they have their Patient and Family Support Services program. This program includes counseling for both the individual and their family, support groups and educational services.

Mesothelioma Program at Moores Cancer Center

At Moores Cancer Center, medical staff members are able to treat both pleural (lung) and peritoneal (abdomen) mesothelioma. As a research facility, Moores is at the forefront of new treatment methods, including HIPEC, which was developed at Moores.

The HIPEC Center at Moores is the largest center of its kind on the West Coast.

Mesothelioma Doctors at Moores Cancer Center

The following doctors currently lead the Moores Cancer Center’s mesothelioma program:

  • Dr. Joel Baumgartner
  • Dr. Andrew Lowy
  • Dr. Anthony Perricone
  • Dr. Patricia Thistlewait
  • Dr. Lyudmila Bazhenova
  • Dr. William Mitchell

Mesothelioma Treatment Options at Moores Cancer Center

Moores Cancer Center is equipped to treat both pleural and peritoneal mesothelioma.

As one of the top academic treatment facilities in the country, Moores Cancer Center is able to offer the latest methods and approaches to treatment, including:

  • Surgery: Moores has thoracic oncology surgeons with expertise in removing lung cancers, including pleural mesothelioma. One form of surgery that is useful for treating mesothelioma is video-assisted thoracic surgery (VATS). In VATS, the surgeon uses a video camera to see inside the lung so the incisions are much smaller, which improves patient recovery time. Another type of surgery is cytoreductive surgery, which removes all visible tumors from the peritoneum or abdomen.
  • Radiation Therapy: Radiation therapy is the standard therapy for patients with an early-stage of lung cancers who are unable to have surgery. It can also be used to shrink tumors prior to surgery, and to prevent tumors from coming back after a patient has had surgery. Some types of radiation therapy are intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT), with image-guided radiotherapy (IGRT) and proton beam therapy.
  • Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy uses drugs to kill cancer cells. One specialized form of chemotherapy that is often used to treat peritoneal mesothelioma is Hypothermic Intraperitoneal Chemotherapy (HIPEC). This involves circulating a warmed chemotherapy mixture in the abdominal cavity for 90 minutes before it is drained out. Studies have shown that this method, which is often used in conjunction with cytoreductive surgery, is more effective than intravenous chemotherapy and that it has fewer side effects.
  • Targeted Therapy: In targeted therapy, which is also known as molecularly guided therapy, specialists look at the genetic makeup of the tumors to determine if there is a specific genetic mutation (such as EGFR, ALK and ROS1). These mutations are then treated with specific drugs, which are often in the form of pills so the patients can take them from home.
  • Immunotherapy: The goal of immunotherapy is to stimulate and re-educate the body’s immune system so it actually attacks and destroys cancer cells. These therapies come in different formats. They could be oral medications, infusions of therapeutic antibodies, or re-infusion of cells modified to target your specific tumor.

Clinical Trials and Research at Moores Cancer Center

There are 6 research programs at Moores Cancer Center:

  1. Cancer Biology
  2. Cancer Genes and Genome
  3. Cancer Prevention and Control
  4. Hematologic Malignancies (cancers that start in blood cells)
  5. Reducing Cancer Disparities
  6. Tumor Growth, Invasion and Metastasis

In these programs, the researchers are investigating new ways to:

  • Re-educate a patient’s immune system
  • Studying the genetic makeup of tumors to identify other mutations that can be treated with specific drugs
  • Creating new diagnostic methods
  • Learning new ways of preventing cancer

As an academic facility, hundreds of trials occur at Moores Cancer Center.

Patients who are interested in participating in any of these studies are encouraged to speak with their oncology care providers, who will work closely with the Moores Clinical Trials Office to find an appropriate trial for the patient.

Moores Cancer Center Insurance Information

Moores Cancer Center accepts the majority of insurance plans and actively works with insurance providers to improve coverage on an ongoing basis. Patients can receive the most accurate and up-to-date insurance information by contacting the Moores Cancer Centre at (855) 827-3633 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekdays or by emailing them at askus@ucsd.edu.

Seeking Treatment at Moores Cancer Center

If you are not a patient at UC San Diego Health and would like to meet with one of our specialists, please call 858-822-6100 to make an appointment.

For more information on the top mesothelioma treatment centers near you, contact our Patient Advocates today.

View Author and Sources
Author

Sources
  1. National Cancer Institute. “UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center.” Retrieved from https://www.cancer.gov/research/nci-role/cancer-centers/find/ucsdmoores. Accessed April 2nd, 2018.
  2. UC San Diego Health. “Cancer Clinical Trials at Moores Cancer Center.” Retrieved from https://health.ucsd.edu/clinicaltrials/cancer/Pages/default.aspx. Accessed April 2nd, 2018.
  3. UC San Diego Health. “Cancers Treated with HIPEC.” Retrieved from https://health.ucsd.edu/specialties/cancer/programs/gastrointestinal/HIPEC/Pages/candidates.aspx. Accessed April 2nd, 2018.
  4. UC San Diego Health. “Lung Cancer Care.” Retrieved from https://health.ucsd.edu/specialties/cancer/programs/lung/Pages/treatment.aspx. Accessed April 2nd, 2018.

Last modified: May 7, 2018