TUCSON, Ariz. – The University of Arizona Cancer Center is one of two new centers to join the Cancer Prevention and Control Research Network (CPCRN) and has received an initial $1.4 million to advance cancer prevention and control science, with particular focus on the health needs of Hispanic cancer survivors.
Initiated in 2002, CPCRN is the largest and longest-standing thematic research network of the Prevention Research Center (PRC) program, which is the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's flagship program for preventing and controlling chronic diseases.
UArizona is one of eight PRCs, which includes the coordinating center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Along with UArizona, collaborating centers include: Emory University, the University of Iowa, New York University-City University of New York, the University of South Carolina, the University of Colorado and the University of Washington.
"We are extremely proud to join this team of outstanding institutions collaborating to advance research efforts in cancer prevention and control," said University of Arizona President Robert C. Robbins, MD. "This collaboration advances the work we do as a land-grant university and Hispanic-Serving Institition. It is an excellent opportunity for our Cancer Center to translate research in this area to better serve the diverse populations in Arizona and nationwide."
"We are delighted to join this prestigious group of academic institutions and community partners committed to reducing the burden of cancer, particularly for underserved communities. With our Prevention Research Center and the UArizona's National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center co-located on the UArizona Health Sciences campus, we are uniquely positioned to advance cancer prevention and control science," said Cynthia A. Thomson, PhD, RD, principal investigator and Cancer Prevention and Control Program co-leader, who also is a professor in the UArizona Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health, with joint appointments in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and the College of Medicine – Tucson.
Researchers from each PRC collaborate to produce research related to the implementation of evidence-based approaches to reduce the burden of cancer, especially in disproportionately affected populations. Since 2004, CPCRN members have produced 1,796 publications and obtained more than $669 million in grant funding.
Each center will complete a five-year core center project that will study implementation of cancer control interventions. These include the patient, a health system, a community or a wider political or economic context that impacts health outcomes. For its part, the UArizona will address the health needs of Hispanic cancer survivors and build on a multiyear partnership with the Mariposa Community Health Center of Nogales, Arizona.
"The CPCRN affords us an opportunity to engage in high-impact programming across the United States, while striving to address the unique needs for cancer prevention and control in Southern Arizona," said Rosi Vogel, the UArizona program coordinator and a health advocate for Hispanic populations.
Fifty-three cancer researchers from the CPCRN's eight academic institutions and their federal agency partners met in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, in January to launch the next five years of CPCRN initiatives. In September 2019, the Division of Cancer Prevention and Control at the CDC awarded UNC – Chapel Hill $3.375 million over the five years to continue serving as the coordinating center, as well as to continue participating in the network as one of its eight collaborating centers.
"We are delighted to be in our 16th year of continuous funding as the coordinating center for the CDC Prevention Research Centers' largest thematic research network," said Stephanie Wheeler, principal investigator for the CPCRN Coordinating Center. "CPCRN has made a profound impact on the science and practice of cancer prevention and control research translation over the years."
"As a CPCRN center, we have the opportunity to develop strategies to prevent and control cancer in Arizona," said UArizona collaborating center investigator Maia Ingram. "Through our partnerships with the other network centers, we also are able to advance the science of what works across diverse populations and settings nationwide."
The UArizona PRC team will co-lead one of the CPCRN focus areas: cancer survivorship. The team includes Dr. Thomson, Scott Carvajal, PhD, Tomas Nuño, PhD, Ingram, Vogel and Meghan Skiba, research specialist, UArizona Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health. The community partners include Patty Molina, Lizzie Garcia and Tatiana Enriquez of Mariposa Community Health Center.
In addition, a new CPCRN scholars trainee program is planned. The UArizona PRC will support the scholars program development and is engaging students in the local Arizona CPCRN efforts.
NOTE: Photos available upon request.
About the University of Arizona Cancer Center
The University of Arizona Cancer Center is the only National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center with headquarters in Arizona. The UArizona Cancer Center is supported by NCI Cancer Center Support Grant No. CA023074. With primary locations at the University of Arizona in Tucson and at Dignity Health St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix, the Arizona Cancer Center has more than a dozen research and education offices throughout the state, with more than 300 physicians and scientists working together to prevent and cure cancer. For more information: cancercenter.arizona.edu (Follow us: YouTube).
About the University of Arizona Health Sciences
The University of Arizona Health Sciences is the statewide leader in biomedical research and health professions training. UArizona Health Sciences includes the Colleges of Medicine (Tucson and Phoenix), Nursing, Pharmacy, and the Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health, with main campus locations in Tucson and the Phoenix Biomedical Campus in downtown Phoenix. From these vantage points, Health Sciences reaches across the state of Arizona, the greater Southwest and around the world to provide next-generation education, research and outreach. A major economic engine, Health Sciences employs nearly 5,000 people, has approximately 4,000 students and 900 faculty members, and garners $200 million in research grants and contracts annually. For more information: uahs.arizona.edu (Follow us: Facebook | Twitter | YouTube | LinkedIn | Instagram).
About The Cancer Prevention and Control Research Network (CPCRN)
The Cancer Prevention and Control Research Network (CPCRN) is a national network under the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of academic, public health, and community partners that work together to reduce the burden of cancer, especially among those disproportionately affected. Its members conduct community-based participatory cancer research across eight network centers, crossing academic affiliations and geographic boundaries. The CPCRN is a thematic research network of the Prevention Research Centers (PRCs), which are the CDC's flagship program for preventing and controlling chronic diseases. The CPCRN is supported by Cooperative Agreement Number (U48 DP006400) from the CDC. The findings and conclusions are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official position of the CDC.