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Partnership To Identify Novel Genetic Drivers Of Cancer Disparities In African Ancestry Populations

Driving Research For Patients

Sylvester and Fox Chase Cancer Center Collaborate with Pfizer’s Institute of Translational Equitable Medicine to study cancer patients from the U.S., Caribbean and Africa .

Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center and Fox Chase Cancer Center announced a collaboration today with Pfizer’s Institute of Translational Equitable Medicine (ITEM) to launch a cancer genomics study to characterize novel genetic, molecular and social determinants of cancer across populations of African ancestry

Kristin E. Rojas, M.D., F.A.C.S.

“People of African ancestry disproportionately develop aggressive, high-grade cancers, particularly in breast and prostate tissues, and the underlying driving factors are not well understood,” said Sophia George, Ph.D., associate director of diversity, equity, and inclusion at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, part of UHealth – University of Miami Health System, and co-leader of the African Caribbean Cancer Consortium (AC3) Women’s Cancer Working Group. Despite a high unmet need, there are a limited number of research studies statistically powered to investigate cancer risk and outcomes in people of African ancestry.

In order to address these knowledge gaps, this collaboration will build a clinical genomic registry of biological specimens accompanied by epidemiological, behavioral, and clinical data from African ancestry patients diagnosed with breast and prostate cancer. Leveraging the AC3 network’s global reach, the team will recruit patients from ethnically, geographically, and socioeconomically diverse subpopulations across the African diaspora: U.S.-born and immigrant Black patients residing in the United States; patients from moderate and low-income countries in the Caribbean islands; and patients from western, eastern, and southern countries in the African subcontinent.