Meet Oncologist Harriet Kluger, MD


– I treat patients who have
skin cancer, mostly melanoma, but some patients have
Merkel cell carcinoma or kidney cancer. The reason that we treat
kidney cancer and melanoma in the same practice
in many institutions is because traditionally over the years, those two diseases were
the ones that were thought to be the most sensitive
to immune therapy, so there’s just a lot of commonality in treatment approaches. When a cancer cell starts
interacting with an immune cell, they start talking to each other. That results in either
activation of the immune cells or deactivation of the immune cells. And most of these newer therapies work by inhibiting those deactivation pathways. In other words, putting brakes on the brake on the immune system. So you essentially harness the
patient’s own immune system to attack the cancer. There’s nothing more rewarding
than seeing these patients. That first visit can be
very, very intimidating. And it’s oftentimes just
the fear of the unknown. What I do tell patients
is that we’re family. We’re there for them, and we want to participate in their care. I really feel it’s been
an amazing privilege to be part of this, I’m gonna
say revolution in cancer care.

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