About Dr. Moller
Dr. Mecker Moller primarily focuses on malignant thoracic cancers, including mesothelioma, breast cancer, melanoma, and sarcomas.
In particular, Dr. Moller treats peritoneal mesothelioma (which develops in the abdominal lining) using a combination of surgery and heated chemotherapy, more commonly known as cytoreduction with HIPEC.
Dr. Moller’s Career Highlights
As a top surgical oncologist, Dr. Moller has served as:
- Associate professor of surgery at the University of Miami Hospital
- Developer and leader of HIPEC peritoneal malignancies program at the University of Miami’s Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center
- A top international doctor, treating patients in the U.S., Ireland, Italy, and Nicaragua
Dr. Moller’s Background
Dr. Moller earned her medical degree at the National Autonomous University of Nicaragua, before joining the internship and general residency programs at the University of Michigan.
She completed a clinical fellowship in surgical oncology at the respected H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center from 2006 to 2008, followed by a research fellowship in surgical oncology at the same center until 2009.
Dr. Moller has performed clinical work at several international hospitals, taking advantage of opportunities to pursue a wide variety of specialties in foreign countries.
In October 2008, Dr. Moller joined the University of Miami as an academic surgical oncologist. She holds this position to this day, teaching students everything she knows about mesothelioma and melanoma.
In early 2011, Dr. Moller was also recruited to develop and lead the heated chemotherapy program for peritoneal surface malignancies at the University of Miami Hospital. In 2012, she extended the program to include Jackson Memorial Hospital, enabling more patients to receive this innovative mesothelioma treatment.
Dr. Moller joined University of Chicago Medicine in July 2023 to bring her specialization to the cancer center.
Dr. Moller is one of the world’s leading experts in hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemoperfusion (HIPEC), also called heated chemotherapy, for peritoneal mesothelioma patients.
Through cytoreduction with HIPEC, a heated chemo solution is applied directly to the abdomen after removing all visible cancer tumors.
The process allows the chemotherapy to reach all the areas and crevices in the abdomen, helping destroy any microscopic cancer cells left behind after surgery. HIPEC also allows for a higher concentration of chemotherapy than is possible with traditional oral or intravenous chemo options.
“What the procedure does is increase your disease-free survival, and it has been proven that it’s better than giving […] IV chemotherapy.”
Dr. Moller is board-certified in general surgery and treats the following cancers:
- Abdominal and peritoneal carcinomatosis
- Appendiceal cancer
- Breast cancer
- Peritoneal mesothelioma
- Small bowel cancer
Dr. Moller’s Career Accomplishments
Dr. Moller has led an accomplished career, making significant contributions to the medical community as both a clinical surgeon and academic researcher.
One of Dr. Moller’s most memorable accomplishments was the creation of the University of Miami’s HIPEC program, which now also operates out of Jackson Memorial Hospital.
Awards & Honors
Dr. Moller’s professional awards and honors include:
- Academic Exchange Scholar – Red Cross Integrative Traditional Chinese and Western Medicine Hospital
- American College of Surgeons Fellow
- First Place Award in Basic Sciences – Michigan State University Research Forum
- First Place Research Prize – XI Central American Congress of Medical Students
- Founder’s Trust Community Impact Award
- Oncology Fellow Scholarship Award – Physician Education Resources
- Pino Cascinelli Melanoma Memorial Award for Young Investigators
- Traveling Fellow Grant Award – European Society for Clinical Investigation
Dr. Moller’s Current Work
Dr. Mecker Moller currently works as a surgical oncologist at the University of Chicago Cancer Center, a part of the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine.
As the director of the Regional Therapies Program, she specializes in cytoreduction with HIPEC to treat her patients. She is also the director of the Surgical Oncology Fellowship Program and a professor of surgery, teaching new surgeons her skills.
Dr. Moller is also an accomplished academic, sharing her expertise in mesothelioma and other peritoneal conditions with surgeons across the nation.
Notable Work by Dr. Moller
Dr. Moller has conducted an innovative clinical trial based out of the University of Miami with the goal to understand how cancer cells grow and how to keep them from growing.
Under cancer stem cell theory, it’s thought that cancer can differentiate itself as it grows, creating numerous types of cells within a single tumor. This diversity of cells makes current therapies less effective.
While cancer therapy may eliminate one or more types of cancer cells, tumors can replace destroyed cells with a different and more resilient variety of cells. In other words, chemotherapy or radiation therapy may suddenly stop working.
Researching the Role of Signaling Pathways
However, research indicates that these cells grow in the first place because of cell signaling pathways, which cause a cell to reproduce. Dr. Moller and the scientific community believe that interrupting the pathways’ ability to generate cancer cells can help prevent cancer growth and potentially cure it entirely.
In this study, researchers investigated the link between Nack, a protein, and Notch, a signal pathway. It appears that Nack amplifies the ability of Notch to grow cancer cells and is a required component for the growth of certain cells.
Research into this type of cell growth is particularly important for mesothelioma patients, as this form of cancer does not typically respond to traditional treatments and has a high recurrence rate. Cell manipulation may be the solution to this ongoing challenge in mesothelioma treatment.
Dr. Moller’s Healing Philosophy
Mesothelioma patients who work with Dr. Moller can expect a phenomenal quality of care.
She attempts to deliver compassionate, high-caliber patient care while advancing treatment options through innovative research. As a teaching hospital, the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine educates the future health care leaders of America and supports specialists in their research projects.
If you’re interested in working with Dr. Moller for your peritoneal mesothelioma treatment, contact Mesothelioma Hope today.
Mesothelioma Hope has no affiliation with and is not endorsed or sponsored by Dr. Mecker Moller. Any contact information listed is for informational purposes only. You have the right to contact Dr. Mecker Moller directly.