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3/3 Morehouse School of Medicine/Tuskegee University/University of Alabama at Birmingham O'Neal Comprehensive Cancer Center Partnership

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OVERALL: PROJECT SUMMARY: (Overall is identical to all three partnering institutions) This type-2 application is to strengthen and build upon the established U54 Partnership between Morehouse School of Medicine (MSM), Tuskegee University (TU), and the UAB O?Neal Comprehensive Cancer Center (UAB OCCC). The Partnership, located in the heart of the Southeast, a region with a large, historically underserved, African American (AA) population, has the overall goal of attaining excellence in research focused on elimination of cancer health disparities and on reducing the cancer burden among underserved populations in the region. The partnering institutions possess distinctive strengths that complement each other in achieving the proposed goal through integrated research, education, and outreach. The primary objectives are to enhance productive cancer research programs, to develop a pipeline of racial/ethnic minority investigators in cancer research at MSM and TU, and to increase the level of involvement of investigators conducting research on cancer disparities at the UAB OCCC. The Partnership has four Cores (Administrative, Outreach, Research Education, and Planning & Evaluation); two Full Research Projects; one Pilot Research Project; and two Shared Resources (Bioethics and Biostatistics/Bioinformatics). With these assets and activities, the Partnership will: 1) through the two full projects, a) determine if amplification and overexpression of TRIP13 contribute to prostate cancer aggressiveness and progression and b) develop combination therapy strategies that modulate the immune microenvironment for colorectal cancers and identify alternative targets adaptable to personalized medicine. The overall objectives of the Pilot Project are to characterize factors associated with uptake of lung cancer screening (LCS) in two different health care systems and to explore barriers and facilitators to LCS at the system, provider, and patient levels that will inform the development of a multi-level intervention. 2) through the Outreach Core, implement and evaluate an evidence-based, theory-informed, multi-level, clinical trial and cancer genomics education program that addresses the determinants for AA and Latinx participation in clinical trials and cancer genomics studies; 3) through the Research Education Core, employ an integrated research education program that involves capacity building and linkages to high school, undergraduate and graduate/medical students, postdoctoral fellows, medical residents, and early-stage investigators, allowing them to pursue careers in cancer research; and 4) provide funding for additional Pilot Research projects. The Planning & Evaluation Core will continually assess/evaluate outcomes of the cores, research projects, and shared resources. The Bioethics Shared Resource will promote and ensure adherence to bioethical principles and address ethical considerations in relationships between the institutions and between the institutions and communities. The Biostatistics and Bioinformatics Shared Resource will deliver statistical and bioinformatics support for all activities. Together, these actions will contribute to elimination of cancer health disparities.

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