Quick Facts
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    Gastrointestinal Oncology
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    Primary Location:
    UChicago Medicine

Get to Know Dr. Hedy Lee Kindler

Oncologist Dr. Hedy Kindler is director of the University of Chicago Medicine Mesothelioma Program, focusing on research that continues to advance treatment of this rare cancer.

Kindler, who joined University of Chicago Medicine in 1999, specializes in the treatment of pancreatic cancer, gastrointestinal tumors and peritoneal mesothelioma.

In 2019, she was named associate vice chair for clinical research, where she specializes in designing and leading innovative clinical trials for many malignancies at the University of Chicago Medicine Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Kindler, who also serves as a professor of medicine, spent almost two decades as medical director of the Center for Gastrointestinal Oncology.

She has played an instrumental role in strengthening the center’s clinical research operation. She has authored more than 160 book chapters, review articles and abstracts, and is an associate editor of the medical journal “Lung Cancer.”

Kindler is also a past president of the International Mesothelioma Interest Group.

Contact Dr. Hedy Lee Kindler

Specialties of Dr. Hedy Lee Kindler

  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Peritoneal mesothelioma
  • Gastrointestinal stromal tumors
  • Immunotherapy
  • Research
  • Clinical trials

Dr. Hedy Lee Kindler’s Experience and Medical Education

  • University of Chicago Medicine
  • Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (Fellowship)
  • Montefiore Medical Center (Residency)
  • UCLA Health (Residency)
  • State University of New York at Buffalo

Awards and Certifications

  • Best Doctors in America
  • Exceptional Women in Medicine
  • America’s Top Doctors for Cancer
  • Alliance for Clinical Trials in Oncology Executive Committee
  • Principal investigator, NCI National Clinical Trials Network
  • American Society of Clinical Oncology
  • American Association for Cancer Research

Mesothelioma Clinical Trials Under Hedy Lee Kindler, M.D.

  • A phase II clinical trial studying the efficacy of the drug olaparib, also known as Lynparza, for malignant mesothelioma patients with specific genetic mutations (BAP1 loss).
  • A phase I clinical trial for mesothelioma patients studying the use of the immunotherapy drug pembrolizumab, also known as Keytruda, prior to undergoing aggressive surgery. Adjuvant treatment with pembrolizumab after surgery will be optional.
  • A study involving tissue procurement of a variety of cancers, including peritoneal mesothelioma, that will be part of a database and used in current and future protocols.

Taking Special Interest in Treating Mesothelioma Cancer

More than most in her profession, Kindler takes the treatment of mesothelioma personally. And with good reason.

Two years after joining University of Chicago Medicine to direct its gastrointestinal program, her father died from mesothelioma cancer, sparking a passion to improve the way it is treated.

Most of her mesothelioma patients today are older and male, needlessly exposed to asbestos years before in occupations in which they worked for many years. She often thinks of her father.

“I grew up in a middle-class family,” Kindler said. “So many of my patients are hard-working men and women — genuine, salt-of-the-earth people — who were ready to enjoy the retirement years that were well earned. They deserve the best possible medical care.”

Publications of Dr. Hedy Lee Kindler

  • Kindler, H.L. et al. (2019, June 5). Olaparib as maintenance treatment following first-line platinum-based chemotherapy (PBC) in patients (pts) with a germline BRCA mutation and metastatic pancreatic cancer (mPC): Phase III POLO trial. Journal of Clinical Oncology.
  • Scagliotti, G.V. et al. (2016, September 21). Phase II Study of Pemetrexed With and Without Folic Acid and Vitamin B12 as Front-Line Therapy in Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma. Lung Cancer.
  • Kindler, H.L. et al. (2016, May 20). Tremelimumab as second- or third-line treatment of unresectable malignant mesothelioma (MM): Results from the global, double-blind, placebo-controlled DETERMINE study. Journal of Clinical Oncology.