There is strong evidence linking lifestyle and behavioral risk factors with a range of cancers. There is also strong evidence that lifestyle change and widespread intervention can reduce the population burden of cancer. The number of individuals affected by cancer continues to grow as the U.S. population ages, and disparities in cancer incidence and mortality remain by race/ethnicity, socioeconomic level, and geography, thus this is a critical time to place emphasis on training investigators in cancer prevention and control research that can reach multiple groups within a population. Increasingly, our health promotion goals cannot be achieved by working within a single discipline. Thus, in this new application for T32 funding, we propose the Postdoctoral Training Program in Cancer Prevention and Control Research. Our overall goal is to provide an individualized transdisciplinary postdoctoral training experience to scholars interested in establishing careers in cancer prevention and control research. Our application funding comes at a time when we have demonstrated preliminary success in recruiting, retaining, and training successful researchers, and will allow us to sustain and expand our program by leveraging institutional resources and grants such as our Transdisciplinary Research in Energetics and Cancer (TREC) Center, and our Community Networks Program Center, the Program for the Elimination of Cancer Disparities, both of which included training elements. The TREC External Advisory Board has been a critical asset in forming and refining our program elements, so we are well prepared for this T32. Our training program includes structured elements including individual development plans, mentored research experiences, and customizable didactic training opportunities. Our innovative training also includes a transdisciplinary journal club, career development programming, and training in communicating with media and lay audiences. Washington University School of Medicine offers a rich environment for trainees, and our transdisciplinary training in cancer prevention and control offers a unique resource to the university environment. Support through this T32 mechanism will allow us to continue to train PhD and MD scientists to conduct transdisciplinary research and lead the next generation of cancer prevention and control researchers.
There is strong evidence that lifestyle and behavior are associated with cancer risk and that cancer prevention and control activities can impact population levels of cancer incidence and mortality. In this proposed training grant, we will train post-doctoral researchers in transdisciplinary cancer prevention and control research. Our unique program aims to train the next generation of leaders in the prevention and control of cancer.