Wayne State University

Wayne State University/Karmanos Cancer Institute receive additional funding to improve access to cancer care

Nationwide, African Americans have the highest death rate of all racial or ethnic groups, according to the American Cancer Society. In an effort to find answers to this alarming problem, Wayne State University, in a cross-campus collaboration with the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute, the Institute of Gerontology and the Center for Urban and African American Health, has received notice of additional funding for a research program that aims to address minority cancer disparities.

This Community Network Program funded by the National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health is building a comprehensive community-based program to reduce disparities of breast, prostate, colorectal and lung cancer that adversely affect older, underserved, African American adults in metropolitan Detroit. The recent award of $199,883 brings the project funding total to more than $3 million since the program was initially funded in 2005.

The program, led by Terrance Albrecht, Ph.D., professor of family medicine and public health sciences at WSU’s School of Medicine, interim associate center director of population sciences and interim program leader of population studies and prevention at KCI, is a catalyst for a community based movement to improve access to and engagement of interventions for cancer screening and early stage cancer detection, diagnosis and treatment. With the ultimate goal of eradicating cancer health disparities, Albrecht is leading community leaders, researchers and medical professionals to maintain education, research and training programs that reduce disparities, promote early detection, aid in treatment seeking and sustain interventions and research.

“This important collaboration represents the commitment of Wayne State University to focus on major issues in urban health,” said Gloria Heppner, Ph.D., associate vice president for research at WSU. “Dr. Albrecht and her associates are on the forefront of efforts to ensure that all Americans are able to receive the latest and best information on cancer, ways to prevent it, and ways to treat it.”

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Wayne State University is one of the nation’s pre-eminent public research universities in an urban setting, ranking in the top 50 in R & D expenditures of all public universities by the National Science Foundation. Through its multidisciplinary approach to research and education, and its ongoing collaboration with government, industry and other institutions, the university seeks to enhance economic growth and improve the quality of life in the city of Detroit, state of Michigan and throughout the world. For more information about research at Wayne State University, visit www.research.wayne.edu.

Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Center Located in mid-town Detroit, MI, the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Center is one of 40 National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer centers in the United States. Caring for nearly 6,000 new patients annually on a budget of $216 million, conducting more than 700 cancer-specific scientific investigation programs and clinical trials, Karmanos is among the nation’s best cancer centers. Through the commitment of 1,000 staff, including nearly 300 faculty members, and supported by thousands of volunteer and financial donors, Karmanos strives to prevent, detect and eradicate all forms of cancer. For more information call 1-800-KARMANOS or go to www.karmanos.org.

 Media Contact: Julie O'Connor, director of research communications, Wayne State University