Posted Online: Oct. 01, 2012, 1:00 pm

Historic ACS cancer research study still short of Q-C volunteers

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Press release submitted by Trinity

Study will be scrapped if nationwide goal of 300,000 enrollees not met

What if you could prevent even one family from hearing the words "you have cancer?"

This year you can, but the American Cancer Society still needs your help finding volunteers in the Quad-City area.

With only a few days left before local enrollment appointments are set to begin for its historic Cancer Prevention Study-3 (CPS-3), the organization is still about 128 people shy of its participation goal of 600 Quad-City community members – or approximately 20 percent. Oct. 2-6 and 9-11, 2012, are the only dates that enrollment appointments are available in this area.

Nationally the ACS needs to enroll at least 300,000 adults nationwide from various racial/ethnic backgrounds. If CPS-3 organizers don't enroll 300,000 across the country, the entire study will be discontinued.

CPS-3 is the third major nationwide study undertaken by the American Cancer Society in the past 60 years. Through CPS-3, researchers want to better understand the genetic, environmental and lifestyle factors that cause or prevent cancer, which ultimately save lives. In CPS-1, researchers studied the link between tobacco use and cancer while CPS-2 established a relationship between obesity and the disease.

According to Jay Willsher, Trinity's Chief Operating Officer who oversees the oncology division, the best way to explain the importance of the study was captured by a volunteer.

"Most people realize now that cigarette smoking causes lung cancer. But few know that it took three years, 22,000 volunteers and 188,000 study participants to prove it during an earlier study. Volunteers are crucial to these studies."

The study is open to anyone who:

• is willing to make a long-term commitment to the study, which means completing periodic follow-up surveys at home for the next 20-30 years.

• is between 30 and 65 years old.

• has never been diagnosed with cancer, not including basal or squamous cell skin cancer.

Enrollment will require completion of a comprehensive, online survey and an appointment to measure waist circumference and take a small blood sample.

Following enrollment, participants will periodically receive mailed surveys at home every few years to update their information. They will also receive annual study newsletters to update them on research taking place in the Cancer Prevention Studies.

To enroll, visit www.cps3quadcities.org or call toll-free 1-888-604-5888. Locations and times vary, with appointment slots still available on both sides of the river at all three Trinity and Genesis locations, as well as at the Two Rivers and Bettendorf YMCAs.