|Consuelo Wilkins, MD, MSCI, Senior Vice President for Health Equity and Inclusive Excellence for Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) and Senior Associate Dean for Health Equity and Inclusive Excellence for Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, always knew she wanted to be a physician. "Health equity was built into everything I did, even if I didn’t know it or recognize it at the time," Wilkins said. "I have always learned and believed that people are the same — everyone deserves to be healthy, and everyone should have the best opportunities to take care of themselves and their families." Click below to learn more about health equity initiatives.
|Vanderbilt was the lead site for an NIH-funded, phase 2, multicenter influenza vaccine study in pediatric allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplant (HCT) recipients that may lead to a change in the current flu vaccine recommendations in this vulnerable population. Natasha Halasa, MD, MPH and colleagues recently published in the New England Journal of Medicine, that two doses of high-dose trivalent flu vaccine resulted in higher amounts of influenza-specific antibodies than two doses of standard dose quadrivalent vaccine.
Testing the use of Ado-Trastuzumab Emtansine Compared to the Usual Treatment (Chemotherapy with Docetaxel plus Trastuzumab) for Recurrent, Metastatic, or Unresectable HER2-Positive Salivary Gland Cancer
This phase II trial compares the effect of usual treatment of docetaxel chemotherapy plus trastuzumab, to ado-emtansine (T-DM1) in patients with HER2-positive salivary gland cancer that has come back (recurrent), that has spread from where it first started (primary site) to other places in the body, or cannot be removed by surgery (unresectable). Trastuzumab is a form of targeted therapy because it works by attaching itself to specific molecules (receptors) on the surface of cancer cells, known as HER2 receptors. When trastuzumab attaches to HER2 receptors, the signals that tell the cells to grow are blocked and the cancer cell may be marked for destruction by body's immune system. Trastuzumab emtansine contains trastuzumab, linked to a chemotherapy drug called emtansine. Trastuzumab attaches to HER2 positive cancer cells in a targeted way and delivers emtansine to kill them. Docetaxel is in a class of medications called taxanes. It stops cancer cells from growing and dividing and may kill them. Trastuzumab emtansine may work better compared to usual treatment of chemotherapy with docetaxel and trastuzumab in treating patients with recurrent, metastatic or unresectable salivary gland cancer.
Testing the Effect of Decreasing Chemotherapy in Patients with HER2-Positive Breast Cancer Without Evidence of Remaining Cancer after Receiving Pre-Surgery Chemotherapy and HER2-Targeted Therapy
This clinical trial studies how well paclitaxel, trastuzumab, and pertuzumab work in eliminating further chemotherapy after surgery in patients with HER2-positive stage II-IIIa breast cancer who have no cancer remaining at surgery (either in the breast or underarm lymph nodes) after pre-operative chemotherapy and HER2-targeted therapy. Drugs used in chemotherapy, such as paclitaxel, work in different ways to stop the growth of tumor cells, either by killing the cells, by stopping them from dividing, or by stopping them from spreading. Trastuzumab is a form of targeted therapy because it works by attaching itself to specific molecules (receptors) on the surface of tumor cells, known as HER2 receptors. When trastuzumab attaches to HER2 receptors, the signals that tell the cells to grow are blocked and the tumor cell may be marked for destruction by the bodys immune system. Pertuzumab is a monoclonal antibody that may interfere with the ability of tumor cells to grow and spread. Giving paclitaxel, trastuzumab, and pertuzumab may enable fewer chemotherapy drugs to be given without compromising patient outcomes compared to the usual treatment.