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Local residents asked to participate in cancer research effort Saturday

Residents of the Morgan County area have an unprecedented opportunity to participate in a historic study that has the potential to change the face of cancer for future generations. Men and women between the ages of 30 and 65 who have never been diagnosed with cancer are needed to participate in the American Cancer Society’s Cancer Prevention Study-3 (CPS-3).

CPS-3 will enroll a diverse population of up to half a million people across the United States and Puerto Rico. The opportunity for the Morgan County-area community to enroll in CPS-3 is 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., May 19 in partnership with Calvary Assembly of God,1413 Glenn Street, SW, Decatur.

CPS-3 will help researchers better understand the lifestyle, environmental, and genetic factors that cause or prevent cancer.

“I wanted to participate in the CPS-3 study because honestly, I hate cancer. Watching my grandmother lose her battle to cancer was the hardest thing my family has ever been through; I’m forever changed,” said Sara Page, who enrolled in the study in 2010.

“Cancer is a devastating disease that doesn’t discriminate. The precious moments most take for granted are the ones people fighting cancer, along with their families and friends, cling to. Hopefully, participating in this study will help doctors with a medical advancement or, more importantly, a cure,” said Page.

To enroll in the study, individuals will be asked to read and sign an informed consent form; complete a comprehensive survey packet that asks for information on lifestyle, behavioral, and other factors related to your health; have your waist circumference measured; and give a small blood sample.

Upon completion of this process, the Society will send periodic follow-up surveys to update your information and annual newsletters with study updates and results. The in-person enrollment process takes approximately an hour to complete. Periodic follow-up surveys of various lengths are expected to be sent every few years to individuals.

“Many individuals diagnosed with cancer struggle to answer the question, ‘What caused my cancer?’ In many cases, we don’t know the answer,” said Alpa V. Patel, Ph.D., principal investigator of CPS-3. “CPS-3 will help us better understand what factors cause cancer, and once we know that, we can be better equipped to prevent cancer.”

Dr. Patel added, “Our previous cancer prevention studies have been instrumental in helping us identify some of the major factors that can affect cancer risk. CPS-3 holds the best hope of identifying new and emerging cancer risks, and we can only do this if members of the community are willing to become involved.”

Researchers will use the data from CPS-3 to build on evidence from a series of American Cancer Society studies that began in the 1950s that collectively have involved millions of volunteer participants.

The Hammond-Horn Study and previous Cancer Prevention Studies (CPS-I, and CPS-II) have played a major role in understanding cancer prevention and risk, and have contributed significantly to the scientific basis and development of public health guidelines and recommendations.

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