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Dana-Farber Cancer Institute leading prostate cancer study in men of African descent
3/27/2016 9:45:41 PM

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute researchers are leading a multi-center genetic study of prostate cancer in Sub-Saharan Africa to try to find new information about the genetic etiology of prostate cancer. 

The researchers from eleven institutions in the U.S. and Africa will look at genetic susceptibility and population genomics of prostate cancer in men of African descent. Specifically, the study hopes to provide new information about the genetic etiology of prostate cancer and evaluate how population differences and history of African and African American populations affects the underlying reasons for high rates of prostate cancer in African Americans.

The five year study, funded by the National Cancer Institute, is being led by principal investigator Timothy Rebbeck, PhD, professor of Medical Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and professor of Cancer Epidemiology at Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health.

“Men of African descent suffer disproportionately from prostate cancer compared to men of other races and ethnicities. Our understanding of this disparity is incomplete and we hope to find some of the answers in this study,” said Rebbeck. “Aggressive prostate cancer is the form of the disease that is the most important to control. African descent men, including African Americans, seem to have biologically more aggressive forms of prostate cancer than other groups.  By studying African descent men, we may also learn about aggressive prostate cancer so that we can better prevent and treat the disease,” Rebbeck added.

The Data Coordinating Center at Dana-Farber will play an important role in this study as the data coordinating center for all of the institutions. 

The participating centers are part of a consortium, Men of African Descent and Carcinoma, and include: 37 Military Hospital, Accra, Ghana; Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York; Center for Proteomic & Genomic Research (CPGR) , Cape Town, South Africa; Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Georgia; Hopital Général de Grand Yoff,  Dakar, Senegal; Korle-Bu Hospital, Accra Ghana; National Health Laboratory Services, Johannesburg, South Africa; NIH/NCI, Bethesda, Maryland; Stanford Cancer Institute, Stanford, California; Stellenbosch University, Cape Town, South Africa; University College Hospital, Ibadan, Nigeria.

The grant is funded by the NCI, grant number U01-CA184374.


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