The Breast Cancer Program at Washington University is dedicated to delivering the highest standard of care for individuals diagnosed with breast cancer or those at a heightened risk of developing the disease.
Our multidisciplinary team of expert physicians and healthcare professionals collaborates closely to provide compassionate, personalized, and comprehensive care. We utilize cutting-edge molecular and imaging diagnostics, offer state-of-the-art treatment options, facilitate access to clinical trials, and integrate holistic approaches to oncology, including acupuncture, physical and occupational therapy, nutrition management, and psychological support.
Our primary focus is on achieving the best possible outcomes and enhancing the quality of life for our patients. We are at the forefront of both clinical and laboratory research, continually striving to advance our understanding of breast cancer and discover improved methods of prevention and treatment.
Make an Appointment
Referring physicians or patients can call 314-747-1171 to schedule a consultation with one of our Breast Cancer Program physicians.
Make a gift to Breast Cancer Research
Washington University Breast Cancer program focuses on the diagnosis and treatment of breast cancers of all stages and subtypes. Some of the diseases we treat are:
- HER2 positive breast cancer
- HER2-low breast cancer
- Triple negative breast cancer
- Estrogen receptor positive breast cancer
- Metastatic breast cancer
- Breast cancer bone metastasis
- Breast cancer brain metastasis
- Inflammatory breast cancer
- Breast cancer in pregnancy
- Male breast cancer
- Ductal carcinoma in situ
- Young women with breast cancer
The Treatment Approach of the program
We are dedicated to offering a comprehensive and personalized treatment approach to ensure that patients receive the highest level of care and support throughout their cancer journey. Our team of physicians collaborates closely with specialists from various disciplines, including radiation oncologists, surgical oncologists, primary care and subspecialty care physicians, pathologists, pain medicine specialists, medical geneticists, physical therapists, psychologists, and social workers. This collaborative effort ensures that our patients not only receive the most advanced cancer treatments but also benefit from the essential support necessary to navigate the physical and emotional challenges associated with a cancer diagnosis and treatment.
Challenging cases are presented during our weekly comprehensive multidisciplinary conferences. Treatment options that we offer include:
- Hormonal therapy
- Molecular targeted therapy
- HER2 targeted therapy
- Antibody drug conjugates
- Clinical trials
- Radiation therapy
Cynthia X. Ma, MD, PhD
Dr. Ma is the Director of the Breast Cancer Program. Her research focuses on understanding resistance mechanisms to endocrine therapy and molecularly targeted drugs. She sees patients at the Center for Advanced Medicine and leads clinical trials aimed at developing better treatments for patients with breast cancer.
Foluso O. (Bisi) Ademuyiwa, MD, MPH, MSCI
Dr. Ademuyiwa’s research interests focus on clinical trial development for patients with triple negative breast cancer, and racial disparities in breast cancer. Dr. Ademuyiwa sees patients at the Center for Advanced Medicine and Siteman South County. She serves as the Principal Investigator for several clinical trials.
Nusayba A. Bagegni, MD
Dr. Bagegni specializes in the care of patients with breast cancer, with a particular interest in aggressive breast cancer subtypes and breast cancer in younger women. Her research is focused on developing novel treatment strategies and investigating therapy monitoring approaches through clinical trials.
Ron Bose, MD, PhD
Dr. Bose focuses on HER2 positive breast cancer and genes involved in ER+ breast cancer. His research has identified HER2 mutations in ER+, HER2 non-amplified breast cancer. He sees patients at Siteman Cancer Center West County and Shiloh, Illinois locations.
Katherine Clifton, MD
Dr. Clifton’s research interest is in patients with hormone receptor-positive breast cancer. Dr. Clifton sees patients with breast cancer at the Siteman Cancer Center West County Campus and Center for Advanced Medicine and serves as the Principal Investigator for multiple clinical trials.
Amy E. Cyr, MD
Dr. Cyr’s research and clinical interest focus on screening and prevention strategies for patients with high risk to develop breast cancer, including patients with genetic risk factors. She sees patients at Siteman Cancer Center in South County, North County, and in Shiloh, IL.
Andrew A. Davis, MD
Dr. Davis’s research focuses on early-phase clinical trials to develop new drugs and drug combinations for patients with breast cancer. He also performs research on liquid biopsies, including circulating tumor DNA, to assess treatment response and resistance.
Faisal Fa’ak, MD
Dr. Fa’ak’s research focuses on developing novel immunotherapeutic strategies coupled with an in-depth exploration of their immune-related adverse events.
Ashley E. Frith, MD
Dr. Frith’s research interests focus on clinical trial development for high-risk patients with breast cancer. Dr. Frith sees patients at the Siteman South County and Siteman St. Peter’s Cancer Centers. She serves as the Principal Investigator for several clinical trials.
Lindsay L. Peterson, MD, MSCR
Dr. Peterson’s research is focused on the role of healthy lifestyles in breast cancer outcomes. She conducts clinical trials to evaluate the impact of various diet and exercise intervention in breast cancer patients receiving treatment and in survivorship.
Carolina Salvador, MD
Dr. Salvador is a practicing medical oncologist with special interest and expertise in non-invasive breast cancer, prevention, survivorship, Integrative Oncology and Acupuncture. She employs a whole person approach to improve quality of life. Patients and caregivers are welcome.
Rama Suresh, MD
Dr. Suresh focuses on enrolling patients in clinical trials to expand the options we have to fight breast cancer. She sees patients on Mondays and Tuesdays at West County and on Wednesdays and Thursdays at South County.
Katherine Weilbaecher, MD
Dr. Weilbaecher’s research focuses on the prevention of breast cancer spread to bone and other organs (metastasis) and on developing therapies and clinical trials that specifically target drugs to breast cancer cells in order to increase effectiveness of immune and chemotherapies while decreasing side effects.
Research and Clinical Trials
The research conducted within our Breast Cancer Program encompasses a wide spectrum, ranging from preclinical investigations in the laboratory to clinical trials. Our primary objectives are to deepen our understanding of breast cancer biology and to pioneer innovative treatments for patients with this condition. Our dedicated team actively participates in clinical trials across all phases, including initial human trials for new drugs and drug combinations, as well as phase III randomized trials that can lead to the establishment of new standard-of-care therapies.
At Washington University, we are at the forefront of developing personalized treatment strategies for each patient facing breast cancer. We achieve this by harnessing tumor genomics, blood-based biomarkers, and cutting-edge imaging technologies. Our physician-scientists are also dedicated to exploring novel drugs that target the tumor microenvironment, with the goal of enhancing the effectiveness of immunotherapy and chemotherapy.
Ongoing Clinical Trial Highlights
- EMBER-4: A Randomized, Open-Label, Phase 3 Study of Adjuvant Imlunestrant vs Standard Adjuvant Endocrine Therapy in Patients who have Previously Received 2 to 5 years of Adjuvant Endocrine Therapy for ER+, HER2- Early Breast Cancer with an Increased Risk of Recurrence
The objective of this trial is to determine whether the investigational selective estrogen receptor degrader Imlunestrant will lead to fewer cancer recurrences as compared to the standard adjuvant endocrine therapy in patients with high risk ER+, HER2- early breast cancer who had received 2 to 5 years of adjuvant (after surgery) endocrine therapy.
- A Phase I/II Trial Evaluating the Safety and Efficacy of Eribulin in Combination with Copanlisib in Patients with Metastatic Triple Negative Breast Cancer
The objective of this trial is to determine whether adding the PI3K inhibitor copanlisib to the standard of care chemotherapy eribulin is more effective than eribulin alone in patients who had disease that progressed on 1-5 prior regimens