The research of Gerardo Colon-Otero, M.D., is focused on the treatment of breast cancer and gynecologic malignancies (ovarian cancer, uterine cancer and cervical cancer) and on efforts to eliminate cancer care outcome disparities.
Dr. Colon-Otero collaborates with other scientists at Mayo Clinic to identify new treatments for gynecologic cancer and breast cancer aimed at overcoming the problem of tumor resistance. His research aims at identifying some of the genetic differences that may contribute to worse outcomes in different segments of the population.
In collaboration with community entities, his team develops community-based interventions aimed at ensuring underserved populations have adequate access to cancer screening and cancer research programs. Dr. Colon-Otero is also actively involved in the training of medical students, residents and fellows.
- Breast cancer
- Gynecologic cancer, including ovarian cancer, uterine cancer and cervical cancer
- Cancer care disparities
Significance to patient care
All patients with breast cancer and gynecologic cancer that has spread eventually die of their cancer, mainly because their cancer becomes resistant to treatment. There is a need to identify the reasons for the tumor resistance so that new effective treatments can be developed.
Dr. Colon-Otero's team research has identified new drug combinations that are effective against ovarian cancer and are studying the mechanism by which these drug combinations may work.
African-American and Hispanic populations have worse outcomes for multiple cancers in part due to genetic reasons and access issues. Dr. Colon-Otero's team is working in collaboration with the community to find ways to ameliorate these disparities in outcome.
- Co-investigator, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health Policy training grant, 2016-present
- Principal investigator, Novartis grant, 2014-present
- President, Florida Society of Clinical Oncology, 2012-2013
- Principal investigator, Palliative Care to Florida Society of Clinical Oncology from American Society of Clinical Oncology grant, 2011-2012
- Principal investigator, American Cancer Society grant, 2008