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What We Do

Hundreds of drugs, drug combinations and targeted agents are used to treat cancer patients.  Drugs that work for one patient may not work for another, even if they carry exactly the same diagnosis.

 

We perform functional profiling  which can help discover the most effective and least toxic drug regimen for you PRIOR to initiating treatment.

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Personal Cancer Testing & Consultations

PERSONALIZED TESTING

We offer personalized testing called, functional profiling, which is a laboratory technique that measures how cancer cells respond when they are exposed to drugs and drug combinations. 

Put simply, it is a real-time measure of which drugs cause your cancer cells to die, through a process called programmed cell death.  By using this approach, we try to determine in the laboratory the best drugs for each patient before they receive them.

Each cancer patient is unique and their response to therapy is very different from one person to the next.

Drugs that work for one patient may not work for another, even if they carry exactly the same diagnosis. This is why each patient should be tested to select the most effective and least toxic drug regimen for them PRIOR to initiating treatment. 

When patients are treated without testing, the treating physicians must rely on general guidelines and protocols that cannot capture each patient's unique features. Standardized, trial-and-error approaches cannot individualize treatment to meet each patient's needs.

We can test most types of cancers, solid and hematologic (blood).

To find the most effective treatment for you, living tumor cells are collected during biopsy or surgery.  It's important to call us BEFORE your biopsy or surgery.

For more information or to order a specimen transportation kit, please call our office at 800-542-4357.

Samples are sent to us from all over the US and internationally.

Once your sample is received in our laboratory, results are generally available within 7 days.  

 

CONSULTATIONS

Our director Dr. Nagourney is available for consultations to help you better understand your diagnosis and discuss treatment options.  He will work with you so you can make informed decisions about your care. 

If you cannot visit our office in Southern California, we may be able to arrange a phone or video consultation with Dr. Nagourney.

Call us at 800-542-4357 to discuss your particular situation.

 

"Dr. Robert A. Nagourney - Nobel-quality researcher and clinical oncologist, extraordinary physician, and creative maverick - is the doctor I'd go to if I had cancer.

For decades, with relentless patience, he's been proving that many supposedly incurable cancers can be killed, with greatly reduced harm to the patient, simply by using agents preselected in the laboratory to kill those specific cancer cells."

— Amory B. Lovins
Chairman and Chief Scientist,  Rocky Mountain Institute (named by Time magazine as one of the World's 100 Most Influential People in 2009)

 

Over the years, I have been privileged to be asked to provide samples to Rational Therapeutics (now Nagourney Cancer Institute) in patients that were stage 4 and in whom I felt their life expectancy would be measured in months.

Dr. Nagourney's assay and the subsequent chemotherapy have been the sole factor in many of these desperately ill patients being alive today, years after their treatment.

— Robert Shuman, MD, Thoracic Surgeon

Our Difference - Functional Profiling

We use functional profiling which is different than genomic testing and is a “real-time” analysis of how your cancer cells actually respond when exposed to various treatment options.

Genomic testing looks for mutations and other changes in your gene makeup that might guide drug selection.  Although the concept is appealing, in reality, a minority of patients have genetic changes that can be used for therapy.

Functional profiling is a laboratory technique pioneered by Dr. Robert Nagourney and his team at the Nagourney Cancer Institute, that measures how cancer cells respond when they are exposed to drugs and drug combinations. 

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What to Expect (Written by One of Our Cancer Patients)

If you or a loved one has just been diagnosed with cancer, you may be scared and confused.

You are probably feeling overwhelmed by so many decisions suddenly facing you.

Patients who actively participate in their own treatment decisions do better.

Knowledge is power, and being able to ask questions and make informed decisions can truly save your life.