ALBANY, Ga. -- The American Cancer Society Epidemiology Research Program is inviting men and women from Southwest Georgia between 30-65 years of age who have never been diagnosed with cancer to join a study officials hope will "create a world with less cancer...and more birthdays."
The ultimate goal, officials with the American Cancer Society say in a news release, is to enroll at least 300,000 adults from various racial and ethnic backgrounds across the United States.
The purpose of the study, known as CPS-3, is to better understand the lifestyle, behavioral, environmental and genetic factors that cause or prevent cancer and to ultimately eliminate cancer as a major health problem.
Enrollment for the study in Southwest Georgia is being conducted in partnership with Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital and Phoebe Sumter Medical Center, with opportunities to sign up beginning Oct. 30. The opportunities to enroll in Albany will be at Phoebe Northwest on Dawson Road -- Rooms A, B and C -- from 3 p.m.-7 p.m. on Oct. 30 and from 7 a.m.-12 p.m. on Oct. 31.
In Americus, enrollment will be in the private dining room at Phoebe Sumter Medical Center -- at 126 Highway 280 West -- from 3 p.m.-7 p.m. on Nov. 1.
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, behaviors and other factors; have waist circumference measured and give a blood sample.
Upon completion of this process, the ACS has said it will send periodic follow-up surveys to update information along with 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, officials say.
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.
For more information about CPS-3, visit www.cancer.org/cps3, email cps3cancer.org or call toll-free at 1-888-604-5888.