Established in 1993, the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center (VICC) is affiliated with and located on the campus of Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee. Staffed by hundreds of faculty from the Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC), the Nashville institution provides advanced forms of cancer education, treatment, and research to the citizens of Tennessee and the national and international cancer community at large.
The VICC is the only Cancer Center of its kind in the state of Tennessee, and it treats all forms of adult and pediatric cancer at its main campus Vanderbilt Clinic, the Henry-Joyce Cancer Clinic and Clinical Research Center, the Monroe Carroll Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt, and numerous other satellite locations through VICC partnerships with other Cancer Centers across the state of Tennessee and around the nation. The VICC is a member of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network, a non-profit organization that includes 21 Cancer Centers that are located around the globe and have been recognized as leaders in the delivery of critical cancer services.
A National Network of Cancer Education, Treatment, and Research Centers
The National Cancer Institute (NCI) is one of eight departments under the aegis of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and it is the chief cancer research organization of the federal government. In the early 1960s, the NCI began to formulate a plan to establish a national network of cancer centers, each one of which would be affiliated with a major university. The NCI eventually brought its plan to Congress, and in 1971, the National Cancer Act (NCA) was signed into law.
The NCA provided the necessary funding and legislative authority for the 63 Cancer Centers that are now located in all regions of the country, out of which 41 have been designated by the NCI as ‘Comprehensive Cancer Centers’ (CCC).
An NCI CCC accreditation is only awarded to those Cancer Centers that comply with stringent NCI guidelines and criteria designed to ensure that the most advanced forms of cancer services are provided at a Comprehensive Cancer Center. The VICC was granted its CCC accreditation in 2001.
Cancer Research at the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center
The VICC is a major national center for cancer research that has over 300 bench (laboratory) and clinical (patient involved) scientists involved in the search to find new ways to prevent, diagnose, treat, and eventually, cure cancer. Ranked 7th in NCI research funding, the VICC research programs receive approximately $150 million in grant allocations annually, and the Cancer Center sponsors approximately 200 clinical trials at any given time. The VICC is one of a select group of Cancer Centers that have received an NCI accreditation to host Phase I and Phase II clinical trials that are approved for in patient testing. The VICC research program history includes the Nobel Prize winning work of Earl Sutherland and Stanley Cohen, whose combined achievements in cell signaling, growth, and spread laid the groundwork for many of the emerging cancer research discoveries of today. The VICC currently conducts its scientific investigations within the seven cancer research programs outlined below:
- Breast Cancer: Bench and clinical scientists in this program focus on epithelial cells (cells that line the surface or cavities of bodily structures) using basic science and molecular biology techniques that are combined with translational research-research that ‘translates’ findings into novel therapies to prevent and treat breast cancer.
- Epidemiology and Population-Based Research: The focus here is on understanding the incidence of cancer in specific populations that can include minorities or economically disadvantaged persons. Researchers examine nutrition and molecular mechanisms in an attempt to develop novel ways to prevent, diagnose, and treat cancer.
- Experimental Therapeutics: With the exception of breast and gastrointestinal cancer (both subjects of separate VICC studies), all other forms of the disease are studied by interdisciplinary teams in this program. The ultimate goal here is to utilize translational research methods to develop clinical trials that will lead to new, safe, and effective cancer fighting therapies.
- Gastrointestinal Cancer (GI): Scientific investigations that include animal studies focused on intestinal epithelial cells. The etiology or progression of the disease is studied by cellular biologists and translational researchers who work to develop experimental therapies to prevent and manage GI cancers.
- Genome Maintenance: Interdisciplinary studies that seek to understand cellular behaviors, mechanisms, and systems that offer clues to the genesis of cancer. Gene studies look at a wide variety of cancer causing factors, including environmental and inherited risks for malignant disease.
- Host-Tumor Interactions: Much is already known about the various and harmful mutation effects of cancer cells. Scientists in this program look closely at the molecular and cellular microenvironments of these cells to determine what cancer contributing interactions take place between cancer cells and the surrounding tumor host environment.
Patient Care at the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center
The VICC was recently ranked by U.S. News and World Report as one of the nation’s leading institutions for the delivery of critical cancer care services. Since it first opened its doors in 1993, the VICC has seen over 30,000 cancer patients, and it treats over 4,000 new cancer patients while overseeing approximately 65,000 outpatient visits annually. Faculty oncologists and health care support personnel provide patients with surgical, chemotherapeutic, and radiological treatments for all forms of cancer at its main clinic and numerous VICC and VUMC affiliated satellite medical facilities. Additionally, the VICC offers a select group of patients at the Cancer Center the opportunity to enroll in one the many clinical trials that offer the hope of promising new treatments for the disease.
The VICC provides cancer patients with numerous cancer treatment support services, such as disease specific support groups that are located within the halls of the Cancer Center, as well as in the community at large. Cancer patients and their families can take advantage of a full spectrum of in-house counseling services that deal with all aspects of cancer treatment, as well as through VICC referrals to other cancer resources outside the Nashville institution.
Contact the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center
The main toll-free phone number is (615) 936-5847, and for a more complete phone listing directory or to learn more about the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center, please visit their website at www.vicc.org
Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center
691 Preston Building
Nashville, TN 37232
Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center
2220 Pierce Ave.
Nashville, TN 37232
Google map for Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center