Ironwood Cancer & Research Centers is committed to providing Academic Cancer Care in a Community Setting ®. We have an active and robust research program that gives patients access to therapies of the future. Our patients have participated in pivotal clinical trials that have changed the way oncology is practiced today.

Medical research has consistently reshaped and improved the field of medicine, leading to the exceptional standard of care we benefit from today. The multinational groundbreaking trials we have participated in have led to the approval of new treatments, our physicians are widely published and continue to advance their respective fields.

What is a clinical trial?

A clinical trial is a research study conducted with volunteers to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of medical treatments. These trials aim to gather data that can help determine whether a new treatment is safe, how it compares to existing treatments, and whether it provides benefits to patients. Clinical trials are essential for advancing medical knowledge and improving patient care.

Why Participate in a Clinical Trial?

The goal of clinical trials is to determine if a new treatment works and is safe. Participation is critical in helping prevent, diagnose, and cure diseases and illnesses. When you participate in a clinical trial, you are contributing to research that could bring new treatments one step closer to reaching patients across the nation. The trial may not only help advance the science for your disease or illness but could also make progress for related areas of science.

Participating in clinical trials offers you an opportunity to:

Contribute to advancing knowledge about new treatments benefiting others in the future.

Access novel research treatments before they become widely accessible.

Receive thorough and attentive medical care from a dedicated research team comprising of doctors and other healthcare professionals.

Clinical trials are a required step in bringing new breakthroughs from the bench to the bedside—from the researcher to the patient. These studies evaluate the effects of an experimental test or treatment and allow the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to determine if it’s safe and effective and should be made available to the public. And these trials won’t happen without the participation of volunteers. If you have a disease or illness that’s genetic, your participation could end up helping your loved ones by making new treatments available and advancing scientists’ understanding of the disease or illness. The study could even be the one that leads to a cure. Consider enrolling in a clinical trial when seeking cancer treatment. By thoroughly exploring all avenues, including clinical trials, you’re actively participating in a decision that impacts your life.

Research Staff Contact Information is used for providers and patients of Ironwood Cancer & Research Centers.  If you have a question about a clinical trial, please use the research staff contact information below:

Research Staff (All Sites)

Ramesh Ramanathan, MD

Medical Director of Clinical Research


Andrea Garcia

Director of Research

Dana Swanson

Regulatory Specialist



Kimberly Palmreuter, RN

Research Nurse- Mesa



Penny Carrel

Clinical Research Coordinator- Scottsdale/ Phoenix



Nicole Di Tullio-Merrill, RN

Research Nurse- Chandler I/Dobson



Devanie Heisler, RN

Research Nurse- Gilbert



Ashley Mercer

Research Assistant- Mesa



Cassandra Volk, CPhT

Junior Clinical Research Coordinator- Chandler 1



Priscilla Callender

Clinical Trial Start Up Specialist- Chandler 2



Patricia (Patty) Figueroa

Research Assistant Chandler



Chris Nabong

Regulatory Research Assistant- Chandler 1



Sarah Shilling

Clinical Research Coordinator Glendale