Hershey, Pennsylvania

Intellect and discovery characterize growth at Penn State Cancer Institute, a free-standing facility located on the campus of Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center. The team continues to emphasize its state-of-the-art interdisciplinary patient care, in which medical, surgical and radiation oncologists jointly determine the best therapeutic course for each patient, and focus on becoming designated by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). Among other strengths, the Cancer Institute’s emphasis on rural, underserved populations is a focus of the CCSG application. Many of these efforts are conducted through the Appalachian Cancer Network by volunteers throughout Pennsylvania who provide education and screening services, as well as behavioral interventions, to reduce cancer risk.

The Cancer Institute team is committed to fighting cancer on every front: through education and prevention, early detection and diagnosis, effective treatment, and survivorship programs. The free-standing facility opened in July 2009 was designed to reinforce the concept of a community of individuals devoted to providing comprehensive cancer care and finding a cure for cancer.

The Cancer Institute’s four scientific programs are Cancer Virology and Immunology, Mechanisms of Carcinogenesis and Chemoprevention, Cancer Control and Population Health and Experimental Therapeutics.

The scientists in the Cancer Control and Population Health and the Mechanisms of Carcinogenesis and Chemoprevention Programs continue collaborative work on two major grants examining the role of tobacco in leading to cancer. In the Experimental Therapeutics Program, scientists have been awarded several grants from NCI in the area of nanotechnology. These projects, developed with leading researchers at University Park, are aimed at delivering new cancer treatments to individual cancer cells. Through a network of local hospitals throughout central and northeastern Pennsylvania, the Cancer Institute brings research to patients in a growing number of communities. Click here for a list of our partners and affiliates.

Research programs continue to expand. The Cancer Institute now has 143 investigators from 25 academic departments in six colleges located at the Hershey and University Park campuses. Over the past five years, the Cancer Institute’s NCI funding has increased by 16 percent with a 22 percent increase in the past three years. Similar strides are being made in the area of clinical trials. In the past year, 18 percent of the Cancer Institute’s new cancer patients were enrolled on a therapeutic or prevention trial.