Chief, Division of Oncology
Professor of Medicine
Stanford University School of Medicine
The treatment and prognosis of early-stage breast cancer has markedly improved over recent decades. However, far less is known about changes in the incidence and survival outcomes of metastatic breast cancer (MBC). The 40,000 breast cancer deaths that happen annually in the United States occur by way of distant metastases, whether detected at diagnosis (in a small proportion of cases) or as a recurrence later on. Most MBC patients are treated continuously from their metastatic diagnosis until their death, and thus their experiences and health care needs exceed those of other breast cancer patients. It is crucial to the public health to understand the changing population burden of MBC, so as to identify specific targets for the improvement of patient care and outcomes. The focus of Dr. Sledge’s BCRF project is to build and validate a biomedical informatics strategy to identify MBC recurrence, which is not currently tracked by any national registry or medical record system. His team’s primary resource is Oncoshare, a research database of 16,680 breast cancer patients treated from 2000-2014, that integrates treatment data from electronic medical records (EMR) with demographic, tumor and survival information from the nationwide Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) Registry. The researchers will use this biomedical informatics approach to study the patterns and predictors of survival among two informative subgroups of MBC patients, those with triple-negative and those with HER2-positive disease. The long-term goal of this project is to develop a clinical decision support tool that mines patient data to evaluate the real-world benefit of treatment options for MBC.
George W. Sledge Jr., MD, is Professor and Chief of Medical Oncology at Stanford University Medical Center. He specializes in the study and treatment of breast cancer and directed the first large, nationwide study on the use of paclitaxel to treat advanced breast cancer. His recent research focuses on novel biologic treatments for breast cancer. He has published over 290 scientific articles spannning both laboratory and clinic.
Dr Sledge serves as Editor-in-Chief of Clinical Breast Cancer, and is Past President of the American Society of Clinical Oncology. He served as chair of the Breast Committee of the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group from 2002 – 2009, where he led the development of nationwide clinical trials. Dr. Sledge was awarded the Hope Funds for Cancer Research 2013 Award of ‘Excellence for Medicine’, and was also the recipient of the 2006 Brinker Award for Scientific Distinction, the 2007 Breast Cancer Research Foundation's Jill Rose Award and the 2010 William L. McGuire Award from the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium.