LSU Health, Moffitt aim to cut disparities in cancer precision medicine

Two centers will share a $2 million National Cancer Institute grant to study cancer health disparities.
By Bernie Monegain
01:28 PM
LSU cancer precision medicine

Photo via LSU Health

LSU Health New Orleans and Moffitt Comprehensive Cancer Center in Tampa will work together to give cancer precision a boost.

The National Cancer Institute is funding the work with a $2 million grant over four years. The study will focus primarily on underserved minorities and also on training students and junior scientists in cancer health disparities-based precision medicine research.

Leading the study are Lucio Miele, MD, director of the Precision Medicine Program at LSU Health and Cathy Meade, MD, co-principal investigator at Moffitt.

[Also: Intermountain, Stanford University see promise for precision medicine in cancer cases]

The funding will be shared equally between the two institutions.

"Louisiana cancer mortality is among the worst in the nation, and many of these cancers are diagnosed in understudied, underserved patients," Lucio Miele, MD, director of the Precision Medicine Program at LSU Health and co-principle investigator, said in a statement.

Even as precision medicine is making strides in tailoring cancer treatment and prevention measures to specific molecular cancer subtypes, the patients who are most affected by cancer are often the ones with the least access to precision medicine studies, the researchers point out.

As they see it, the situation is leaving a huge gap in understanding how to plan cancer prevention and care, and it could add to making existing health disparities even worse.

"There is an acute need for investigators who will carry the torch into the future, investigate cancer health disparities and share their results with stakeholder communities,” Miele noted.

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