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National Jewish Health Transitions into Lung Cancer Care and Research

National Jewish Health is seeing its first cancer patients today in the newly established Lung Cancer Center. National Jewish Health has diagnosed and treated lung cancer patients for many years. The opening of the center integrates all current clinical and research cancer efforts. Initially, the Lung Cancer Center will focus on the diagnosis, treatment and research of lung cancer with expansion into other forms of cancer in the future. Lung cancer is the third leading cause of death in the United States with more than 150,000 deaths each year; more deaths than breast, prostate and colon cancer combined.

As the top respiratory hospital in the nation, National Jewish Health is uniquely positioned to provide exceptional diagnosis and treatment for persons with lung cancer.

"Oncology at National Jewish Health draws on existing strengths in imaging, genomics, interventional pulmonology, immunology, pathology and clinical research," said Jeffrey Kern, MD, Chief of Oncology at National Jewish Health. "World renowned physicians and scientists at National Jewish Health have focused expertise and state-of-the-art technology that enables early detection and intervention, accurate staging, and therapy for the best possible prognosis."

An adult chemotherapy infusion center will open shortly to provide chemotherapy treatment. Radiation oncology and surgical oncology will be coordinated closely with the University of Colorado Denver Health Science Center and Rose Medical Center.

"One of our hallmarks will be individualized and personalized selection of treatment for patients taking into account a patient's specific type and stage of lung cancer, their genetics and other medical conditions," said Dr. Kern.

Dr. Kern's own research has helped reveal the origins of lung cancer, especially the events within cells that control their growth. He will continue that line of research while recruiting world-class scientists to develop a research program based on epithelial-cell biology, cell signaling, tumor immunology, tumor biomarkers, and drug discovery and testing. As a part of the lung cancer program, Dr. Kern and his colleagues will participate in clinical trials and translational research.

National Jewish Health is known worldwide for treatment of patients with respiratory, cardiac, immune and related disorders, and for groundbreaking medical research. Founded in 1899 as a nonprofit hospital, National Jewish remains the only facility in the world dedicated exclusively to these disorders. Since 1998, U.S. News & World Report has ranked National Jewish the #1 respiratory hospital in the nation.

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