You may be old enough to remember when smoking and more recently, obesity, were identified as risk factors for cancer. You may also be old enough to remember when people believed that microwaves, deodorant, artificial sweeteners and even fluoridated water cause cancer. Thanks to diligent research we now know that exposure to this list of four items will not instigate cancer. A recent article in the New York Daily News by Stepansky and Dillon discusses how we came to rule out certain exposures as cancer-causing and new proposed trials that will continue to look at exposures and the possibility of developing cancers.
The CPS or Cancer Prevention Study is now entering its third generation of investigation. CPS-I, the first trial, followed one million adults, men and women, for more than ten years and concluded that smoking cigarettes was a direct risk factor for lung cancer. CPS-II, which began in 1982, looked at the link between being overweight and ten different cancers, including post-menopausal breast cancer. It found that excess weight had a link to cancer risk. Researchers are now seeking participants for CSP-III. This latest survey will follow about 500,000 volunteers for the next 20 years. The volunteers need to currently be cancer-free and between the ages of 30 and 65. Participants will undergo a baseline blood test, waist measurement and an initial questionnaire that covers lifestyle, family, environment, occupation, behavior. Individuals will then receive a 45 minute questionnaire to fill out every two years.
CSP-III aims to delve deeper and assess the risk of being overweight or obese as it relates to cancer risk, as well as examine how changes in lifestyle – diet, exercise – affect the risk. The survey will also look at how genetics play a role in cancer risk. Two smokers can have very different family history risks and genetic backgrounds, and therefore have varying levels of risk for developing lung cancer, even if they share this similar lifestyle habit. Surveys like CSP, that extend for more than a decade, also allow researchers to introduce new questions, based on evolving theories. The impact of new medications or a newly identified lifestyle habit can be added to the database of questions, during a two decade study. Of course, volunteers need to be highly motivated to stick with a study like this for the duration. Sign ups are happening at community centers nationwide. The researchers are looking for a diverse population of men and women. Privacy of participants is protected. For more information, you can call 888-604-5888 or log on to: http://cancer.org/cps3
Why join? Because participation in the study can help to eliminate cancer as a makor health concern for more generations. Read more….
Sources for this blog:
The Daily News – Cancer Clues by Joe Stepansky and Nancy Dillon (October 4, 2012)
Published On: October 14, 2012