Eugene (Gene) Hwang, M.D., is part of the Children's National Health System Pediatric Neuro-oncology team, focusing on treating children with brain tumors. Dr. Hwang has developed and led many novel early phase therapeutic clinical trials with a focus on immunotherapeutic trials, and he also leads trials focused on gene therapy and new, targeted agents. He is the site Principal Investigator of the Pediatric Brain Tumor Consortium, where he is the co-chair of the Immunotherapy Working Group. He serves on grant review committees and on the scientific advisory boards of several large foundations. For each patient, Dr. Hwang carefully considers the best possible options for treatment, trying new, cutting edge treatments coupled with the best available known therapies.
Dr. Hwang is not only dedicated to finding a cure for cancer, but also to making the current treatments as safe as possible for children. "We often focus on curing the children - that's the number one goal - but we also need to pay attention to the toxicity of these treatments, and what quality of life the children will have after treatment," he says. Dr. Hwang is involved in several international efforts to study how to best mitigate the side effects of treatment.
In the meantime, Dr. Hwang makes sure he's doing everything he can to combat pain, dizziness, fatigue and other common side effects of cancer treatments by leveraging the multidisciplinary team approach of Children's National. He sees this as something the organization does exceptionally well, and thinks that having so many people focus on a single patient in a single visit is crucial to well-being during cancer treatment.