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Ask the Doctor: Michael Demeure, M.D.

Q: Why did you choose to come to Hoag to practice precision medicine?

A: Before coming to Hoag, I was working at the Translational Genomics Research Institute in Phoenix, AZ. During my time there, my work focused on using the technology and information learned through the human genome project to improve the care of patients with diseases.

Hoag was a collaborator on our project and during our interactions, it was mentioned that Hoag Family Cancer Institute was looking for a medical director of its Precision Medicine program. There was also a need for an experienced endocrine surgeon, which is my area of clinical expertise. After talking with Dr. Burton Eisenberg, Grace E. Hoag Executive Medical Director Endowed Chair, Hoag Family Cancer Institute, and Dori Holnagel, vice president of Clinical Institutes, I thought Hoag would be a great fit for me and I’m excited to be here.

At Hoag Family Cancer Institute, we’re using genomic technologies to improve the care of patients with cancer. We are working to develop programs focused on early detection so we can find cancers early and treat them with a higher success rate. We are also looking at using genomics to see if we can reduce complications associated with toxicities of cancer treatment.

Using precision medicine was previously only accessible at large academic medical centers, but now Hoag is utilizing precision medicine through genomic profiling to hone in on the precise molecular abnormalities that create and sustain cancerous tumors. This emerging approach for treatment will give clinicians a clear profile of a patient’s tumor genomic abnormalities, and relevant information to offer more precise treatment options. Currently, Hoag is applying this technique to provide targeted approaches to many different tumor types.

I’m also working to bring new treatments for patients with endocrine cancers. We have already developed a new imaging study and brought a clinic trial to study treatment technologies for patients with tumors of the endocrine system.

It’s an exciting time to be here. What I found is the people at Hoag have the energy, the commitment and the resources to allow us to make progress in the treatment of cancers.

Michael Demeure, M.D., is the medical director of Precision Medicine and is an endocrine surgeon at Hoag.