The Ben and Catherine Ivy Center for Advanced Brain Tumor Treatment
Great strides have been made in the treatment of breast, colon and other common cancers in recent years. Yet, the life expectancy of a person diagnosed with glioblastoma, the most common form of malignant primary brain cancer, is only about 15 months — a little better than it was a century ago – and only three new drugs have been FDA approved for the treatment of brain cancer in the last 35 years.
Community support received through The Campaign for Swedish and the Seattle Brain Cancer Walk helped establish The Ben & Catherine Ivy Center for Advanced Brain Tumor Treatment at Swedish in 2008 to improve the prognosis for brain tumor patients in the Pacific Northwest – particularly those with malignant tumors – and make progress toward a cure for brain cancer.
When it opened six years ago, the Ivy Center was the first brain tumor-specific community-based facility of its kind in our region. Today, with the support of our donors, the Ivy Center has become a preeminent Center of Excellence, offering patients coordinated, patient-centered care through a team approach that tailors the most advanced surgery and oncology treatment with access to promising new clinical trials.
In addition, the Ivy Center’s world-class research laboratory, which is funded almost entirely by philanthropy, is gaining national and international attention for its brain tumor research program, which is focused on three primary goals:
- Advancing our understanding of brain tumors through collaborations with leading partner institutions like the Institute for Systems Biology and the Allen Institute for Brain Science that are focused on improving the scientific understanding of brain tumors and their causes, and making this knowledge available to the international brain tumor community.
- Developing personalized therapies based upon the patient’s unique genetic make-up, and testing multiple drugs on tissue cultures of the tumor in the laboratory. These procedures, not performed at any other brain tumor center in the region, may lead to prolonged survival for Ivy Center brain tumor patients.
- Increase brain cancer survival to 5 years and beyond through the strategies outlined above, in addition to providing access to innovative clinical trials involving the latest cutting edge therapies such as patient-specific vaccines and new anti-viral treatments.
With generous donor support, the Ivy Center is driving important advances for brain tumor patients in the Pacific Northwest and contributing to research and treatment discoveries that will advance the fight against brain cancer for all patients.