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Enrollment gets under way for cancer study

ALBANY, Ga. -- Enrollment is continuing through Thursday in Southwest Georgia for a study officials hope will answer some questions regarding the causes of cancer and how it can be prevented.

Enrollment for the American Cancer Society Cancer Prevention Study-3, or CPS-3, began on Tuesday at the Phoebe Northwest Conference Room and will continue there from 7 a.m.-noon today.

In Americus, enrollment is also set for 3 p.m.-7 p.m. Thursday at Phoebe Sumter Medical Center, located at 126 Highway 280 West.

During enrollment, participants are being asked about their family medical history, having vital statistics taken and having a blood sample drawn.

CPS-3 is an ongoing effort by the ACS and its partners, including Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital, to enroll hundreds of thousands of healthy adults in a long term study that officials say will hopefully lead to new breakthroughs in finding the causes of cancer.

Participants will be sent surveys periodically during the next 20 to 30 years, through which the ACS hopes to gain insight into how lifestyle, environment and genetics factor into the cause or prevention of cancer.

Researchers will use the data from CPS-3 to build on evidence from a series of ACS studies that began in the 1950s involving volunteer participants. The ACS has said that the Hammond-Horn study, along with previous cancer prevention studies -- CPS-I and CPS-II -- have played a role in understanding cancer prevention and risk, and have contributed to the scientific basis and development of public health guidelines and recommendations.

Specifically, those studies are cited for confirming the link between cigarette smoking and lung cancer, demonstrating the link between larger waist size and increased death rates from cancer and other causes -- and showing the impact of air pollution on heart and lung conditions.

The current study, CPS-II, began in 1982 and is still ongoing. Changes in lifestyle and in the understanding of cancer since its launch make it important to begin a new study, officials say.

Those between 30-65 years of age and have not been diagnosed with cancer, not including basal or squamous cell skin cancer, are eligible to participate. For more information, visit www.cancer.org/cps3 or call toll-free at 1-888-604-5888.