Tuskegee, UAB, Morehouse Received Grant to Research Cancer Disparities

Tuskegee University, the University of Alabama at Birmingham and Morehouse School of Medicine received a five-year $18 million grant from the National Cancer Institute to study and address cancer disparities in Black and rural communities, according to a recent announcement.

The grant will focus on intervention and prevention for underserved communities across the South, particularly since Georgia and Alabama have high rates of cancer mortality.

“This award will provide a catalyst to bring a number of nationally recognized standard of care services to cancer patients in rural areas while conducting research to improve cancer patient outcomes continually,” Clayton Yates, Ph.D., lead principal investigator and director of the Tuskegee University multidisciplinary Center for Biomedical Research, said in a press release.

Using the funds, researchers will focus on implementing prevision cancer medicine, conducting cancer research, education, and training programs to try to understand the cause of cancer disparities. Other efforts will focus on cancer research and cancer education, including looking at the number of students/investigators of minority background engaged in cancer research, and the number of researchers addressing cancer health disparities.

“Our ultimate goal through this grant is to eliminate cancer disparities in the Deep South through integrated efforts in research, education, and outreach,” said Isabel Scarinci, PhD, senior adviser for globalization and cancer at UAB’s O’Neal Comprehensive Cancer Center. “Although research is important, it is not enough to eliminate cancer disparities alone. We need to get these evidence-based approaches to the ones experiencing the highest burden of disease and train the next generation to continue this mission.”