Precision Oncology

Individual Treatments for Individual Cancers

With your help, we are prepared to launch a new era in cancer care, delivering highly tailored treatments and risk-reduction strategies to patients based on their biology and the unique molecular characteristics of their tumor. 

What Is Precision Oncology?

Every patient and their cancer contain a multitude of data points that can offer a plan for stopping that specific tumor in its tracks. Until recently, making sense of this molecular data was too expensive and too time-consuming.

Now, thanks to significant advances in our ability to gather and interpret that data, we are on the cusp of leveraging it to personalize therapies for each patient. That is the power of precision oncology: Rather than simply treat a patient’s cancer based on its primary site — whether liver or lung or breast or colon — we will soon be able to use its own biology against it.

We need your help to take the next leap forward. Fred Hutch scientists are making new discoveries every day, from how cancer cells metabolize certain nutrients to methods for targeting proteins expressed by those cells. But fully harnessing the power of precision medicine will require transformational investment that empowers our teams to dream bigger and push the boundaries of what’s possible.

The Power of Precision Oncology

Research Technician Alicia Morales works in the Warren Lab

Quickly matching drugs to patients with multiple myeloma

Multiple myeloma has more than five dozen mutations with variable drug responses, making it extremely difficult to treat. Fred Hutch researchers have shown that it’s possible to quickly test patients’ tumor cells against more than 150 drugs in the lab to determine which will be most effective.

Illustration of a DNA Helix

Turning a weakness into a strength for lung cancer treatment

Our researchers have identified duplicate genes — which typically aid cancer by providing a backup if one gene dies — as a potential target for cancer drugs in patients with lung cancer.

 Dr. John Lee working in his lab

Narrowing in on a target for prostate cancer treatment

Fred Hutch researchers have shown that some prostate cancer cells have high levels of a specific protein marker and using this marker to guide chemotherapy to these cancer cells could be an effective treatment.

Illustration of Barrett's Esophagus

Improving screening for esophageal cancer

We are much closer to understanding why some patients with a precancerous condition called Barrett’s esophagus progress to esophageal cancer, opening the possibility of future screening options that could identify who should be treated and who can just be monitored.

Your support will empower our scientists to push further and develop more targeted treatments.

Featured Researchers

Dr. Eric Holland

Dr. Eric Holland

Dr. Holland is a world-renowned physician-scientist who combines compassionate patient care with exacting laboratory research to discover more effective treatments for brain tumors.

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Dr. Alice Berger

Dr. Alice Berger

Dr. Berger, who holds the Innovators Network Endowed Chair, bridges laboratory studies and computational biology to understand how different gene variants contribute to cancer development.

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Dr. Evan Ya-Wen Yu

Dr. Evan Ya-Wen Yu

Dr. Yu is a medical oncologist who provides a personalized-medicine approach to test novel therapies and discover unique cancer biomarkers for patients with prostate, bladder and testicular cancer.

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Dr. Sita Kugel

Dr. Sita Kugel

Dr. Kugel works to understand the molecular changes that underpin different subtypes of pancreatic and liver cancer and how those molecular changes could be exploited to develop new targeted therapies. 

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Last Modified, September 15, 2022