The annual age-adjusted mortality rate for cancer in the District of Columbia (DC) is 212 per 100,000 persons compared to 170 for the Nation. The incidence of cancer is disproportionately high among African Americans, who constitute 68% of the population of the District of Columbia. DC exemplifies that cancer rate disparities exist among different racial groups. In an attempt to address the cancer burden among the African American community in general, and that of DC in particular, we will establish a partnership between the Lombardi Cancer Center (LCC), which is a Comprehensive Cancer Center (CCC), and the University of the District of Columbia (UDC), which is a minority serving institution (MSI).
The aims proposed below are critically needed in the District because of its high cancer burden, and this P20 planning grant is an ideal mechanism for fostering our partnership and achieving our objectives: (1). To foster a long term cancer research focus at UDC, along with collaborative relationships with LCC, by training two research faculty from UDC in Cancer research; (2). To develop a joint long-lived undergraduate training program in cancer biology and cancer prevention, consisting of at least 2 undergraduate courses and a senior research project program, in order to encourage minorities to apply to graduate cancer research programs; (3) To increase the awareness and promote research at LCC relating to cancer and cancer disparities among the D.C. African American community. (4) To develop a joint long-lived cancer outreach program focusing on cancer prevention and risk behavior in the African American community. This planning grant was deliberately designed to consist of a realistic beginning for the partnership, where there was none before. It addresses clear gaps in the respective institutions and the needs in the local community.