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University of Hawaii Cancer Center

University of Hawaii Cancer Center

701 Ilalo Street
Honolulu, HI 96813

(808) 586-3010

Doctors Affiliated with this Treatment Facility

Learn More about this Cancer Center

The University of Hawaii Cancer Center is a premiere research institution and treatment facility dedicated to “reducing the burden of cancer through research, education and service with an emphasis on the unique ethnic, cultural and environmental characteristics of Hawaii and the Pacific.” Located on the island of Oahu in Hawaii’s capital city, Honolulu, the University of Hawaii Cancer Center is one of 66 research institutions designated by the National Cancer Institute.


The University of Hawaii established its cancer center in 1981, and it received its National Cancer Institute designation in 1996. This designation recognizes the center as one of the best cancer research institutions in the world and requires it to meet stringent requirements and undergo constant evaluation.

Researchers at the University of Hawaii Cancer Center work in three interdisciplinary programs: epidemiology (a science that deals with the distribution and control of diseases), cancer biology and cancer prevention and control. Within those programs, they conduct cutting-edge research in areas like epidemiology, molecular carcinogenesis, cancer treatment and prevention methodology. An important aspect of the cancer center’s work is outreach to Hawaii’s multiethnic community, including education, particularly about prevention, and support programs for cancer survivors.

In February 2013, the University of Hawaii Cancer Center celebrated the grand opening of a $103-million, six-story, 150,000-square-foot building that consolidates many of the center’s programs under one roof. (Previously, the center was housed throughout several buildings.) The warm and inviting facility features a glass and steel exterior with large windows to maximize natural light and strategically placed windows that offer beautiful views of the ocean, Kaka‘ako Waterfront Park, and the Diamond Head volcanic cone. Inside the building are 75,000 square feet of laboratory space as well as offices, computer labs, fitness areas, and conference rooms. Clinical research staff members, who work with patients, are housed in University of Hawaii facilities located closer to hospitals.

The new building earned a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold Certification, a prestigious designation for “green” buildings.

Mesothelioma Treatment at the University of Hawaii Cancer Center

The University of Hawaii Cancer Center is a global leader in mesothelioma research. Under the leadership of center director Michele Carbone, a pathologist who specializes in mesothelioma, researchers at the center have made important discoveries about the disease; they have identified the gene that causes mesothelioma, BAP1, and a protein that is critical in the development of the disease. Understanding the mechanisms by which mesothelioma occurs is an important step in developing treatments to fight it.

Mesothelioma patients at the University of Hawaii Cancer Center may have the opportunity to take part in a clinical trial, a research study in which patients use experimental drugs or therapies that are not yet available to the public at large. Findings from the studies help doctors and researchers learn which treatments lead to the best outcomes.

The University of Hawaii Cancer Center benefits from being part of the Hawaii Cancer Consortium, an alliance of leading health care organizations in the state united in the goal of eliminating cancer through science. Other members of the consortium are the Queen’s Medical Center, Hawaii Pacific Health, Kuakini Medical Center and UH Manoa’s John A. Burns School of Medicine.

Author: Linda Molinari

Editor in Chief, Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance

Linda Molinari

Reviewer: Annette Charlevois

Patient Support Coordinator

Annette Charlevois

University of Hawaii Cancer Center

National Cancer Institute — University of Hawaii Cancer Center

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