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EVMS participating in research to understand cancer outcome disparity

Story Date: Fri, 03 May 2013 10:34:00 EDT

Researchers at the EVMS Leroy T. Canoles Jr. Cancer Research Center are collaborating on a five-year project funded by the National Cancer Institute to determine a root cause of disparities in prostate cancer outcomes between Caucasian and African-American men.

The research will explore how changes to a specific protein — sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) — affect hormone function in prostate cancer. Radoslav Goldman, PhD, of Georgetown University’s Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, is leading the study. The EVMS team — led by O. John Semmes, PhD, Anthem Distinguished Professor for Cancer Research and Director of the Leroy T. Canoles Jr. Cancer Research Center; and Dean Troyer, MD, Professor of Microbiology and Molecular Cell Biology — is providing critical data gleaned from EVMS’ large repository of cancer-tissue samples.

Black men account for 59 percent of cancer diagnoses and are more than twice as likely to die from prostate cancer than Caucasian men. The consortium aims to define and understand differences in the SHBG-prostate cancer connection that could help explain the clinical disparities. The results from these studies are expected to drive further research into new cancer-prevention and health-disparities studies.