Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine
Our doctors working in this area provide personalized, specialized patient care, using a patient-and-family-centered care approach when administering anesthetics to minimize discomfort during medical procedures, and also provide pre-procedure medical evaluation and management of pain symptoms in cancer patients.
Applied and computational mathematics include some of the most diverse and interdisciplinary research in the physical, engineering, and biological sciences. The principles of applied math are utilized in mathematical biology, in areas such as biochemistry and neuroscience.
Basic Sciences scientists are working at our institutions in diverse areas related to all aspects of biology to address unresolved questions in science using a wide range of model systems. This wide spectrum of models enables a thorough analysis of the internal workings of cells as well as the complex interactions between cells and organisms so that we can better understand the biology behind cancer. The work done by our researchers in this area contributes towards the improvement of cancer prevention, care and treatment for the surrounding community and world-wide.
Biobehavioral Nursing & Health Systems
Our nurses doing research in this field focus on the promotion of health communication and health literacy through the use of information technology tools, such as computerized linkage of medical records. The aim is to improve data management within clinical trials, leverage information from patient tumor samples for decision-making and enhance quality improvement. In addition, they enhance patient safety, support evidence-based and patient-and family-centered care, and improve the health of communities, with special attention to the needs of medically underserved community members.
Our researchers are studying the chemical processes within, and relating to, living organisms to understand how biological models give rise to the processes that occur within living cells, which in turn reveals a lot about the functioning of entire organisms (including humans). By learning more about the actions of our cells under normal circumstances, and the ways that cells behave under varying stressful or unusual circumstances, our researchers learn more about the behavior of cancerous cells and potential mechanisms to prevent or treat these cells once abnormal processes have begun to slow progression or treat cancer.
Researchers studying the application of concepts in engineering (such as design and manufacturing of mechanisms and tools in a cost efficient and practical way) in combination with molecular biology to living organisms such as cells or people.
Bioethics & Humanities
Bioethics and Humanities is an academic discipline that deals with the ethical, legal, and social implications involved in biological research. An example of this is dividing risk equally amongst all patients in clinical trials and chemotherapies. The main goal for our researchers is to treat every patient with care and ensure that the risks of their treatments do not outweigh the benefits. Through this work, our teams ensure that quality of life is a top priority.
Biological structure is a branch of molecular biology concerned with the molecular structure of biological molecules like proteins and nucleic acids. Structural biology studies how cells acquire the structures they have, and how alterations in their structures affect cellular function. Cancer research understanding functions and how alterations affect biological structure is important for the development of effective therapies.
Biomedical Informatics & Medical Education
Specialists in this field combine knowledge of information science, computer science and health care to deal with the resources, devices and methods required to optimize the acquisition, storage, retrieval and use of health information in new and creative ways. The goal is to implement a more effective and efficient use of information by doctors and other health professionals to improve the quality of care and services provided to cancer patients.
Basic research findings in biology (the study of living things) expand our knowledge of the natural world and can lead to important breakthroughs in the field of health. Our researchers in the field of biology make discoveries that effect the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer.
Biostatisticians make use of statistics on a wide array of biological topics. They participate in the designing of research studies and clinical trials as well as the collection and analysis of the data these experiments produce. They work to ensure that studies include enough participants and are gathering correct information to answer the research questions. Cancer systems are extremely complex and generally require a vast amount of data to make any conclusive discoveries. Our biostatisticians perform top quality analyses of these data to ensure the research is interpreted correctly.
Cardiothoracic surgery involves operations performed on organs within the chest. Operations often involve organs such as the lungs, heart, or esophagus which are essential to the human body. Our surgeons are proud to have the best equipment and skills possible to remove these tumors. Cardiothoracic surgery has saved many cancer patients’ lives to date.
Research in cellular therapeutics seeks to treat cancer patients by transferring their own, or a closely matched donor’s, activated immune cells to fight tumors. Our researchers study and grow these cells to be as effective as possible in their fight against cancer. This is a powerful therapy for many cancer types, and many patients owe their lives to this discipline.
Our chemical engineers focus on designing, studying, and operating processes that transform raw materials into desired products for cancer research and therapy. They also develop ways to convert waste products into ecologically friendly forms. Research developments in chemical engineering include transforming raw materials into biotechnology for cancer research and pharmaceuticals for cancer treatment.
Researchers in this field study the properties and behaviors of molecules under various circumstances and within different environments. This work is fundamental to the development of new and improved therapies for the treatment of cancer and its related symptoms.
Scientists, researchers and clinicians are involved in taking discoveries made in the laboratory and translating them into improved treatment for patients with cancer and new or improved ways to cure cancer. Through clinical research, these faculty continue to refine the techniques for fighting cancer to improve effectiveness and extend their use. Other avenues of research being conducted by this group include research into cancer vaccines.
Doctors and researchers whose goal is to advance research in animal models of disease and thereby promote better understanding of human diseases such as cancer. By gaining a better understanding of and learning how to treat disease in animal models, physicians can provide safer and more specialized care to patients. Additionally, by working with animal models, researchers can discover and test new therapies for the treatment and prevention of disease.
Our computational biologists develop methods for combining research data into useable, accessible formats that allow for easy identification of relationships even in large amounts of information. This work allows our translational research teams to better understand how things are related in biological systems. For example, they help to uncover things like the biological steps underlying cancer development; how doctors can better cluster patients by disease sub-types; and why certain treatments are more effective in some patients than others.
Our computational oncologists focus on forging a bridge between clinical cancer treatment and laboratory research to better treat cancer. Our scientists believe that physics and mathematics can be applied to cancer therapies to find more information into how effective our treatments are and how to make them better. They obtain and analyze data using state-of-the-art computer software and hardware, ensuring that the latest science and most effective therapies are combined to create the best possible treatments.
Computer Science & Engineering
Computer science is an emerging field in the fight against cancer. It is expected to play a very important role in personalized medicine and even more so for research. Also, computer science allows for more efficiency when sequencing genomes and helps decide which cancer therapies to use to cure a patient. Computer engineering works hand and hand with Computer Science by developing new machines for faster and more efficient analysis of large amounts of clinical and molecular data.
Cytogenetics is a branch of genetics that is concerned with the study of the structure and function of the cell, especially the chromosomes. It involves analysis of chromosomes to discover mutations.
Our economists research the costs of cancer treatment to lay the groundwork for changes in public policy and insurance coverage. They also focus on improving cancer care standards, ensuring that treatments use the most cost-effective methods for our patients. Our teams work hard to ensure that cancer care does not cause unnecessary financial burden to families and patients.
Electrical engineering is a field of engineering that generally deals with the study and application of electricity, electronics, and electromagnetism. Instrumentation engineering deals with the design of devices to measure physical quantities such as pressure, flow and temperature. The design of such instrumentation requires a good understanding of physics that often extends beyond electromagnetic theory.
Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences
Environmental and occupational health (EOHS) research is focused on understanding and minimizing harmful environmental impacts on human health. Cancer can be caused by a number of different factors in one’s environment and lifestyle. Our EOHS teams develop ways to reduce pollution, and work to minimize workplace hazards to develop ways to reduce potentially cancer causing exposures.
Epidemiologists study the geography over which specific cancer cases occur, the number of cases within that region, and the factors contributing to these cancer cases in various human populations. This research helps us to understand the environmental, behavioral, and genetic risk factors for cancer among the general public. This information can then be used to improve prevention efforts causing a reduction in the number of cancer cases in our communities.
Our doctors are devoted to providing continuing and comprehensive health care for the individual and family across all ages, genders, diseases, and parts of the body. Our doctors provide treatment in this area based on knowledge of the patient in the context of the family and the community, emphasizing disease prevention and health promotion.
Our doctors specialize in the digestive system and its disorders. Our gastroenterologists have an in-depth knowledge of methods of diagnosis, treatment and continued care for patients with cancer.
A genome is the entirety of an organism's hereditary information. Our scientists use this information to address cutting-edge questions in biology and medicine, such as individual cancer risk based on heredity and other genetic factors. They are also working to gain a better understanding of the way bodies will react to various cancer therapies, so that in the future, treatments can be tailored based on a patient's genetic profile.
Gerontology & Geriatric Medicine
These doctors specialize in the care of older adults, including the promotion of health, prevention of disease, treatment for illness/disability and long-term care. Our researchers and doctors diagnose and care for patients with cancer, and are well-equipped to provide for the health care needs specific to this population.
Our doctors in this specialized field of medicine provide care that focuses on the female reproductive system, including the ovaries. These doctors have an in-depth knowledge of methods for the diagnosis, treatment and care of patients with ovarian cancer.
Our researchers in health services partner with members in health care and public health to solve problems in policy and practice that have created road blocks to the most effective cancer solutions. Our health services workers make sure public policy increases ease of access to cancer care and services to improve the well-being of local and international communities.
Hematology focuses on the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of diseases related to blood. Our researchers evaluate a patient’s blood to find clues into the types and aggressiveness of tumors within the body. This can help researchers and doctors to better understand the behavior of cancer and identify appropriate treatment for patients.
Our laboratory and clinical researchers who use computers to model processes within our bodies do work in the space where basic, clinical and population-level sciences come together, using an interdisciplinary model to advance understanding of human biology and the complex problems associated with cancer.
Our researchers are working to harness the innate powers of the immune system to fight cancer. Their research of the immune system may lead to longer-term protection against the disease and come with fewer side effects for patients with cancer.
Sometimes long-lasting infections can make people more likely to develop cancer. Examples include HIV which can cause Kaposi Sarcoma and HPV which can cause both cervical and head & neck cancer. Researchers in the vaccine and infectious disease group work hard to develop vaccines to prevent these potentially cancer causing infections. Their goal is to reduce the number of cancer cases resulting from these viruses and lower the burden of disease in our communities.
Our doctors focus on the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of adult diseases, including cancer.
Our doctors conduct clinical testing on patient samples (including sections of the tumor, blood from the patient or saliva) to gather information about the health of our patients, specifically providing information relevant to diagnosis, treatment and prevention of future disease. They provide an environment conducive to the performance of high-quality research and development to support research of treatment for cancer.
Materials Science & Engineering
Research in materials science is a broad discipline mainly focused on making raw materials useful for technological advancement and improving treatment or care. Our researchers play a crucial role in advancing cancer cure and research technology in the lab, in the clinic, and everywhere in between. Our researchers ensure that our teams have the best tools possible in their fight against cancer.
Our researchers in this field are involved with seeking new knowledge through research, creative design and development to improve the techniques we use to understand how cancer and cancer drugs will behave in our bodies. This translates to improved care for patients with cancer as researchers have access to unique methods for evaluating the impact of cancer therapies on human cells and systems before treating patients.
Our medical geneticists conduct research in the applications of genetic information on patient care. This field encompasses areas of gene therapy, personalized medicine, and predictive medicine, using this knowledge to develop state-of-the-art treatment strategies for patients with cancer based on their unique genetic profile.
Medical oncologists specialize in the treatment of cancer with a variety of cancer-fighting medications and treatment protocols. Our doctors and scientists in this area bridge the worlds of basic science, clinical diagnosis and treatment of cancer. Our clinics have a strong focus in clinical trials of new diagnostic and treatment approaches and develop methods for improved treatment of cancer.
Metabolism, Endocrinology & Nutrition
This area of work involves studying the mechanisms by which we break down food and medicine once inside our body. Differences in metabolism between individuals change the way our bodies break down certain compounds, meaning two individuals may process a drug differently and it could be more effective in one than another. The related study of endocrinology looks at hormone signaling within the body which can be related to the way our bodies break down nutrients and react to different compounds. By understanding the ways that nutrition, metabolism and endocrinology contribute to or mediate disease, we can better understand the way that individuals will react to certain diets or drugs and tailor therapies to maximize their success within each individual cancer patient.
Our researchers in this area study microscopic organisms to discover their unique characteristics and survival mechanisms. They can apply this understanding to cancer biology and translate it into better diagnostic tests, treatments and care for patients with cancer.
Molecular & Cellular Biology
Molecular and cellular biologists are generally concerned with understanding the interactions between the various systems of a cell, including the interactions between different types of cellular structures (DNA, RNA, and protein) as well as learning how these interactions are regulated. By understanding the function of cancer and normal cells, our researchers can use their knowledge to develop therapies that are specific to cancer, or even sub-types of cancer.
Natural Language Processing
Natural Language Processing is a field of computer science and linguistics concerned with the interactions between computers and human language. Clinical information needed for cancer research and operations come from the unstructured text of clinical narratives, and natural language processing programs automatically extract clinical information from clinic notes to help ease the burden of existing manual processes and provide high quality clinical data to physicians and researchers.
This medical specialty is concerned with the diagnosis and treatment of brain cancer. Our doctors are expert surgeons with the ability to perform state-of-the-art procedures to remove cancerous tumors from the brain and provide high-quality follow-up care to ensure our patients' well-being.
Our doctors offer comprehensive consultation, evaluation and treatment services for adults and children with brain cancer, and in many cases are involved in research activities to improve patient care and post-treatment outcomes. They have specialized training to investigate, diagnose and provide the highest quality of care for our patients with brain cancer.
These nurse practitioners and doctors specialize in the treatment of brain cancer. Our team provides treatment for many types of brain cancer and works hard to ensure the highest quality of care for each cancer patient who comes in the door.
Our doctors in this field specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of disease. Using radioactive substances to target cancerous tissue, while leaving normal tissue unharmed. Through the targeting of cancerous cells with a particular substance, cancerous areas can be highlighted during imaging to give doctors a clearer picture of what is taking place within the body.
Our nurses specialize in the protection, promotion, and optimization of health and abilities. They work along side our doctors to alleviate suffering through early and prompt diagnosis and treatment of cancer. Additionally, our nurses act as advocates in the care of cancer patients and their families.
Obstetrics & Gynecology
Doctors in this department provide surgical and medical care to patients with ovarian cancer. Our doctors have specialized knowledge of the female reproductive system and provide high-quality surgical management for their patients.
These doctors provide the highest-quality medical and surgical care for patients with brain cancer involving procedures to the eye. Our doctors have extensive knowledge and experience dealing with these procedures and are conducting research into methods for further improvements in their techniques.
Our doctors in oral medicine diagnose cancers through oral screening, treat diseases and disorders located in and around the mouth that have developed from oral cancer and/or the treatment of other cancers, and conduct research. There are many complications from cancer treatments (both chemotherapy and radiation) that can negatively impact the mouth and surrounding areas even if that isn’t the location of the original cancer. Our doctors in oral medicine will evaluate and treat these side-effects to minimize the negative impact of treatments on patients.
Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine
Orthopedics & Sports Medicine focus on the, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of problems in bones and muscles. Sometimes side effects from cancer treatment can limit a patient’s abilities. Our teams work with patients to prevent that loss of ability during treatment and will continue to work with them following treatment to gain back any lost function through treatment and exercise.
Our otolaryngologists specialize in the treatment of the head and neck. Their focus is often on the ears, throat, and nose, but they are usually trained to treat infections and tumors in most areas of the face and neck. Otolaryngologists ensure that patients feel good during and after treatment with the least possible scarring in the process.
Palliative care is specialized medical care that provides relief from symptoms, pain and stresses or life-limiting illness. Our doctors' goal is to prevent and ease the suffering of our patients, and to improve the quality of life for patients, their families and caregivers.
Our pathologists examine tissue samples from patients and look for structural alterations or changes within cells and for the presence of cancerous cells, to provide specific diagnoses for patients or to further classify disease sub-types. In addition, they examine tissue samples (sometimes called biopsies) from patients after cancer treatment to ensure there are no more cancerous cells present.
This team of talented doctors and investigators focus on the development and care of infants and children with brain tumors. Through dedicated research and excellent clinical care, our pediatric team strives to achieve the best possible outcomes for each and every cancer patient. Our doctors provide the nation's best primary and specialty pediatric clinical care.
Pharmaceutics is the study and design of drug formulation for optimum delivery, stability, action, and patient acceptance and deals with all aspects of the process of turning a new chemical entity (NCE) into a medication able to be safely and effectively used by cancer patients in the community. This field draws on many areas of the basic and applied sciences, such as chemistry (organic, inorganic, physical, biochemistry and analytical), biology (anatomy and physiology, biochemistry, cell biology, and molecular biology), mathematics, physics, and chemical engineering, and applies their principles to the study of drugs.
Our doctors and scientists study the effects of various chemicals (i.e. cancer therapies) and the ways that they interact with different components within the body. Sometimes this involves looking at the differences between various patients and the effects of a cancer drug within their bodies depending on their unique genetic profile, or it could look at the way a cancer drug effects a normal cell compared to the way it effects a cancerous cell. Research in this field helps to develop more effective drugs with fewer side-effects for cancer patients.
Physics is the natural science that involves the study of matter and its motion through space and time, along with related concepts such as energy and force. More broadly, it is the general analysis of nature, conducted in order to understand how the universe behaves. Physics also makes significant contributions through advances in new technologies that arise from theoretical breakthroughs.
Physiology & Biophysics
Our scientists study how cells, organisms,organs and organ systems carry out the chemical or physical functions that exist in a living system. They conduct research concerned with understanding the interactions between the various systems of a cell, including the interactions between DNA, RNA and the production of protein, as well as how these interactions are regulated, which provides important insights into our understanding of cancer progression and furthers the development of treatments for cancer.
Researchers in proteomics study proteins within cells, tissues, and organisms. Proteins are fundamental building blocks to both healthy and cancerous cells. Our researchers seek to understand what role proteins play in the development of cancer, how they interact with other proteins in the process and how the amount and type of normal cell proteins differ from those in cancerous cells. Through this research our teams can better understand cancer and learn more about prevention and treatment options.
Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences
Our psychiatrists implement an approach to care which incorporates intrapersonal, interpersonal, and sociocultural factors. Intrapersonal factors include emotion, perception, brain chemistry, genetics, and the developmental and aging processes. Interpersonal factors focus upon familial, and group interactions. Sociocultural factors include the cultural, social, institutional, and community systems as well as the environment and context of health and disease. This holistic approach to care contributes to improved outcomes for cancer patients.
Our psychologists work with cancer patients to evaluate emotional and other needs of the patient to help them process the stresses and lifestyle changes associated with cancer diagnosis and treatment. Providing this support to patients increases quality of life for themselves, their families and their caregivers.
The goal of these scientists is to identify strategies that would ultimately reduce the incidence of and mortality from cancer. Using large populations as their "laboratory," our public-health researchers look for links between cancer and its possible triggers, from diet and lifestyle to environmental and genetic factors. Identifying such cancer causes can lead to better cancer-detection methods and new ways to help people adopt healthier lifestyles to minimize or avoid their risk of getting the disease in the first place. This includes contributions from the fields of biostatistics, environmental & occupational health sciences, epidemiology, global health, and health services.
Pulmonary & Critical Care Medicine
Our doctors are experts at diagnosing and treating lung cancer and are committed to improving standards of clinical care as well as generating new knowledge in clinical and basic science, so that they can continue improving outcomes for their patients.
Our doctors specialize in the use of radiation as part of the treatment to kill cancerous cells. Radiation therapy is often used in conjunction with chemotherapy to give cancer patients the best possible chance of survival.
These doctors employ the use of imaging to both diagnose and treat cancer. Our doctors use an array of imaging techniques such as X-rays, ultrasound, CT scans, and MRIs to visualize cancer within the body.
Our doctors in this field are trained to provide rehabilitation care to cancer patients who have experienced loss of function due to their cancer or the associated treatment. They work hard alongside patients to restore normal function and improve quality of life for cancer patients and survivors.
Shared Resources is a wide range of services and tools offered by Fred Hutch to the research community. This includes laboratory services to researchers who would otherwise have difficulty accessing the necessary equipment or technology. This allows researchers to save time and money while performing the scientific experiments necessary to learn more about how cancer develops and what treatments might be helpful to patients. Shared Resources helps speed the translation of laboratory breakthroughs into patient care in the clinic.
Social Work & Survivorship
Our social workers are licensed professionals who provide emotional and practical support to patients and their families or friends. Services may include supportive counseling, education about helpful services and resources, and coordinating care with other providers and community services. Survivorship programs are available to patients who have survived cancer and are not being actively treated or are in long-term therapy to prevent their cancer from coming back.
Speech & Hearing Sciences
Our patients have access to trained providers who offer evaluation and treatment services for cancer- or treatment-related speech and hearing related communication needs. Our speech-language pathologists specialize in cancer-associated communication and swallowing disorders and are available to assist in the recovery process to ensure a continued high quality of life for our patients and survivors.
Our surgeons provide consultation for cancers, as well as pre- and post-operative follow-up and education for patients. Surgery is a medical specialty that uses operative techniques on a patient to investigate or remove cancer. This can also include reconstructive and cosmetic plastic surgery as well.
Our physicians are specialists in the diagnosis and treatment of prostate and bladder cancer. They are highly-trained professionals and are able to comfortably address all related issues relevant to prostate and bladder cancer as well as establish effective treatment plans in collaboration with our oncologists.