Cristina Merkhofer, M.D., M.H.S.

Dr. Cristina Merkhofer M.D., M.H.S.
Faculty Member

Cristina Merkhofer, M.D., M.H.S.

Assistant Professor
Clinical Research Division, Fred Hutch

Mail Stop: M3-B232

Dr. Cristina Merkhofer studies the effectiveness and value of cancer treatments given in the real world, or outside of clinical trials. She aims to help patients and their doctors make informed decisions about care through analysis of real-world data on treatment outcomes and costs. She also studies the value of clinical trial participation for both patients and health care payers. In addition to her research, Dr. Merkhofer is a medical oncologist who cares for patients with mesothelioma and cancers of the lung, thymus, and the head and neck.

Other Appointments & Affiliations

Assistant Professor, Division of Medical Oncology
University of Washington School of Medicine


University of Washington/Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, 2020, Fellowship (Hematology/Oncology)

University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, 2017, Residency (Internal Medicine, Global Health and Underserved Populations track)

University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, 2014, M.D.

Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, 2010, M.H.S. (International Health)

University of Pennsylvania, 2008, B.A. (Biology)

Research Interests

Value of clinical trial participation for patients and healthcare payers

Comparative- and cost-effectiveness studies of treatment regimens for lung cancer

Improving cancer care delivery for thoracic and head and neck cancers

Clinical Expertise

Lung cancer


Thymic malignancies

Head and neck cancer

Current Studies

Project Title: Chemotherapy and Pembrolizumab Versus Pembrolizumab Monotherapy for Metastatic Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer with PD-L1 Tumor Proportion Score ≥ 1%: A Real-World Evidence Study
Source of Support: Conquer Cancer Foundation
Grant Type: Young Investigator Award
Role: Principal Investigator
Goal: The goal of this study is to evaluate the effectiveness of two commonly used upfront treatment regimens in metastatic non-small cell lung cancer, using data from patients treated outside of a clinical trial.  The results will inform a cost-effectiveness analysis comparing these two regimens, with the goal of aiding patient and oncologist decision-making.

Project Title: A Real-World Comparison of Initial Chemotherapy +/- Immunotherapy-based Treatment Regimens in EGFR+ Metastatic Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer
Source of Support: University of Washington, Division of Medical Oncology
Grant Type: Stork Petersdorf Lung Cancer Research Award
Role: Principal Investigator
Goal: This study will use real-world data to assess the effectiveness of chemotherapy-based treatment regimens in patients with EGFR mutated metastatic non-small cell lung cancer whose disease has progressed through EGFR targeted therapies.

Find a Clinical Trial

For the Media

The Media Relations team at Fred Hutch is available to assist members of the news media who would like to arrange interviews with faculty.

Email or call 206.667.2210.