Dr. Claire Verschraegen is a highly published medical oncologist with vast experience in numerous clinical trials for mesothelioma. She has a deep understanding of how mesothelioma behaves and how it can be effectively treated in patients.
Dr. Verschraegen has over 30 years of experience working in drug development and clinical research. During this time, she has conducted extensive research into how chemotherapy drugs, such as pemetrexed (Alimta) and gemcitabine, can be combined to effectively treat mesothelioma in many patients.
“In my 30 years of being an academic medical oncologist, incredible progress has been made in a few areas — most notably including some leukemias, lung cancer, and melanoma, where novel targeted therapies and immunotherapies have transformed cancer from dreadful to possibly curable.”
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Dr. Verschraegen currently works at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center (OSUCCC- James).
The James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute
460 West 10th Avenue
Columbus, Ohio 43210
She also treats patients at Ohio State Martha Morehouse Outpatient Care.
Ohio State Martha Morehouse Outpatient Care
2050 Kenny Road
Columbus, OH 43221
Over her career, Dr. Verschraegen has:
Completed extensive research on the drugs Alimta and gemcitabine, concluding it is often an effective treatment for peritoneal mesothelioma
Directed numerous leading medical institutions, including the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center and the New Mexico Cancer Center
Recognized as an academic leader within the medical community with more than 80 peer-reviewed articles, in addition to 20 invited articles and 10 book chapters
Dr. Verschraegen’s Background
Dr. Verschraegen holds a medical degree from Université Libre de Bruxelles in Belgium, where she graduated magna cum laude.
After completing an internal medicine internship at the Institut Jules Bordet, she completed an internal medicine residency at the University of Houston and a fellowship in cancer research from the Stehlin Foundation for Cancer Research.
She completed a second fellowship at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in medical oncology, remaining at MD Anderson for the next seven years. Dr. Verschreagen later served as medical director at the New Mexico Cancer Care Alliance and director of Translational Therapeutics and Clinical Research at the University of New Mexico Cancer Center.
At the University of Vermont, Dr. Verschraegen oversaw the Phase 1 clinical trials program, was the Irwin H. Krakoff, MD, Endowed Green & Gold Professor of Medicine, and directed the hematology/oncology division. She was also deputy director of the University of Vermont Cancer Center.
Dr. Verschraegen currently works at the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital (OSUCCC – James) and Richard J. Solove Research Institute. She is their director of medical oncology and associate director of the translational research program.
Dr. Verschraegen is a member of:
Alliance for Clinical Trials in Oncology
Education Committee of the International Gynecologic Cancer Society (IGCS)
European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC)
Gynecologic Oncology Group (GOG Foundation)
Scientific Board of the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation (MARF)
SWOG (formerly Southwest Oncology Group)
Dr. Verschraegen’s extensive background in medical oncology gives her several unique areas of focus. She is best known for her innovative clinical trial work and academic findings. She has focused on anti-cancer drug development, as well as treatments for peritoneal mesothelioma and other forms of cancer.
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Dr. Verschraegen is a highly accomplished academic oncologist. She has held illustrious positions at some of the world’s top cancer facilities. She has been the principal investigator for numerous clinical trials and is noted for her work with New Mexico’s Community Clinical Oncology Program, providing clinical trial access to those in need.
Her ability to receive continuous funding for Phase I, II, and II clinical trials are extraordinary, especially for cancers like mesothelioma that have been traditionally challenging to support due to their rarity.
Dr. Verschraegen continues to educate residents and fellows and routinely shares her new findings with the medical community.
Awards & Honors
America’s Top Doctors
America’s Top Doctors for Cancer
CMS Stage 1 EHR
Occino-Kernkamp Prize – Belgium Association of University Women
Dr. Verschraegen currently oversees the Division of Medical Oncology at the OSUCCC – James.
She leads over 50 faculty members who practice a wide range of cancer care and research specialties. She continues to be involved in numerous clinical trials and publications and is an active academic medical oncologist.
Notable Clinical Trials
Dr. Verschraegen is a true believer in funding clinical trials to develop new and innovative ways of treating people. She also believes in the power of recruiting participants for clinical trials so that researchers can actually follow through with and analyze their experimental therapies.
Clinical Trials Update
Dr. Verschraegen’s most notable clinical trial was the testing of a new chemotherapy drug combination for peritoneal mesothelioma. She and her team of researchers tested a chemotherapy drug combination of Alimta and gemcitabine.
This approach was significant because up until this clinical trial, the only other approved drug combination for peritoneal mesothelioma was pemetrexed and cisplatin, another chemotherapy drug.
But because patient response varies between different drug types, it is important for researchers to find new and effective drug combinations that can be tolerated by other patients.
These two chemotherapy drugs were chosen because they have demonstrated synergistic effects, meaning they become more effective together than each one is on its own. The results of this drug combination were promising, indicating that peritoneal mesothelioma patients could improve their median survival times with this approach.
Dr. Verschraegen is a vital advocate for the advancement of mesothelioma research and treatment. Her dedication to developing, promoting, and ultimately completing clinical trial tests on new therapies has been critical.
She understands the importance of finding and recruiting patients to participate in clinical trials for the betterment of all patients. She believes that patients deserve the best, most effective treatments possible and understands the significant role that clinical trials play in achieving this goal.
Mesothelioma Hope has no affiliation with and is not endorsed or sponsored by Dr. Claire Verschraegen. Any contact information listed is for informational purposes only. You have the right to contact Dr. Claire Verschraegen directly.
Laura Wright is a journalist and content strategist with more than 14 years of professional experience. She attended college at the University of Florida, graduating magna cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in journalism in 2008. Her writing has been featured in The Gainesville Sun and other regional publications throughout Florida.