OVERALL The Caribbean Region is highly diverse, comprising low, upper middle, and high income islands and mainland countries, different language groups, and cultural/ethnic backgrounds. Health data show rapidly increasing non-communicable disease (NCD) burden with a majority of deaths attributed to cardiovascular disease (CVD), cancer, diabetes or chronic respiratory disease. The African-Caribbean Cancer Consortium (AC3), an NCI-EGRP supported consortium, is a global cancer research program of Fox Chase Cancer Center (FCCC), and partnered with The University of the West Indies (UWI), has had a strong partnership since 2007. To date, research in cancer, nutritional epidemiology and genetics has resulted in numerous publications with the majority focused on prostate cancer. UWI, a regional University with its main campus in Jamaica, has a Caribbean-wide network of health research and health care facilities, and contains expertise in the skills required for NCD research including basic science, epidemiology and clinical research. It has a strong tradition of research in obesity, diabetes, CVD, cancer and their risk factors. We will build on the strengths of this partnership and have proposed foundational efforts to establish a Regional Center for Research Excellence in Jamaica with a focus on cancer and cardiometabolic research. Guided by a community health and research/laboratory needs assessment, research enhancement, community engagement activities and a pilot project, plans in Jamaica will include a research program and three shared core facilities. The Methodology/Biostatistics and Biomarker/Biospecimen Cores are already established at UWI and community engagement activities are already ongoing. We will build on the community engagement infrastructure to establish an Outreach Core facility for continued community engagement and research support. The long- term plan is to establish a Regional Center for Cancer and Cardiometabolic Research comprised of Centers of Excellence spread across the Caribbean (the U54 phase). A Caribbean-wide community-health and research/laboratory needs assessment generated in this application will guide the development of a strategic plan by year 2, which will help to prioritize step-wise inclusion of additional partners, and beyond. sustainability of the center and scientific focus during the U54 phase

Public Health Relevance

Cancer, cardiovascular disease and diabetes are the leading cause of morbidity and mortality in the Jamaica and the wider Caribbean region. The overarching goal of this application is to conduct foundational activities to ultimately establish a Regional Center for Research Excellence, focusing on cancer and cardiometabolic research that will effectively strengthen infrastructure, resources and expertise to stimulate and increase collaborative research aimed at addressing the NCD epidemic in the Caribbean.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Exploratory Grants (P20)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZCA1)
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Silkensen, Shannon M
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Research Institute of Fox Chase Cancer Center
United States
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Ragin, Camille; Banydeen, Rishika; Zhang, Christine et al. (2018) Breast Cancer Research in the Caribbean: Analysis of Reports From 1975 to 2017. J Glob Oncol :1-21
Dubey, Bhawna; Jackson, Maria D; Zeigler-Johnson, Charnita et al. (2017) Inflammation polymorphisms and prostate cancer risk in Jamaican men: Role of obesity/body size. Gene 636:96-102
Ragin, Camille; Blackman, Elizabeth; Roberts, Robin et al. (2017) Cancer in populations of African Ancestry: studies of the African Caribbean Cancer Consortium. Cancer Causes Control 28:1173-1176