FAMU Center for Health Disparities Research OVERALL SUMMARY The overarching goal of the Florida A&M University (FAMU) RCMI Center application (2019-2024) is to establish an interdisciplinary Center to address minority health and health disparities while building on and enhancing the competitiveness of faculty-led health disparities research to attract extramural funding. Our Center for Health Disparities Research will enhance basic biomedical and behavioral research at FAMU while also improving upon investigator's research skills. To achieve the goal of the Center, we are proposing the following specific aims: 1) Enhance FAMU research capacity and rigor for basic biomedical/behavioral research pursuits by supporting innovative research projects, expanding research infrastructure, and strengthing community engagement partnership and activities that will create a sustainable research environment. 2) Increase the success rate of FAMU investigators in obtaining extramural research funding by enabling investigators to develop cutting- edge research competencies through the offering of Career Enhancement Program (CEP), the use of innovative technology, collaborations and use of resources provided by the RCMI Research Coordination network (RRCN). 3) Support new faculty and early career investigators in health disparities research by establishing an Investigator Development Core that will provide pilot projects funding and a robust mentoring program accompanied by a platform through the Career Enhancement Program. 4) Establish and support partnerships with the community to create a sustainable research environment that addresses health disparities research by establishing the RCMI Community Engagement Core (CEC) to promote early education awareness, detection, and screening. The center will also support three Innovative research projects in the areas of basic biomedical and behavioral addressing mechanisms, and screening intervention to reduce health disparities among minorities. These research projects will address novel therapy in breast cancer, validate innovative drug delivery for lung cancer and investigate new approaches to promoting colorectal cancer screening among minorities. Also, the Center will establish well-engaged collaborations and partnerships with recognized research centers and leverage the resources provided by NIH-supported programs such as the RCMI Research Coordination Network (RRCN) and NRMN. Achieving the goals of the Center will be greatly facilitated by the commitment and partnership of the Mayo Clinic Comprehensive Cancer Center- Jacksonville Florida, with its SPORE grants which will provide an environment that is conducive to career enhancement that would increase minority Junior Investigators' professional development and retention in cancer research. Also, the excellent opportunity of collaboration between the NCI U54 Funded Florida-California (CARE2) Health Equity Center and FAMU RCMI Center will provide many avenues to enhance and ensuring achieving the goals of the FAMU RCMI Center. The Center will have an external independent evaluator to implement an evaluation plan to reach data-driven decisions that will optimize the efficiency, effectiveness, and success of the center. The funding of this RCMI Center will enable FAMU achieving its mission of addressing health disparities through the enhancement of FAMU research capacity, increasing the number minority research investigators and promoting minority health and aid in the reduction of minority health disparities.
Impact: Florida A&M University is proposing to establish the RCMI Center in collaboration and partnerships with community- based organizations to address minority health and health disparities research. The center will enhance FAMU's research capacity, increase the number of minority research investigators, promote minority health, and aid in the reduction of health disparities.