800 Eastern Iowans Needed for National Cancer Prevention Study

By Addison Speck, Reporter


By Lisa Kunkel

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - October has been declared Cancer Prevention Month in Cedar Rapids. Mayor Ron Corbett made the proclamation on Tuesday while announcing the city's effort to help the American Cancer Society recruit 800 people locally to help with their recent study.

The nationwide Cancer Prevention Study, also referred to as CPS-3, needs 300 thousand Americans. Local leaders said it's crucial Eastern Iowans take part, so researchers can figure out why some people get cancer, and others don't.

"It doesn't cost a dollar and it's a real concrete way to know you are making a difference," said Dave Martin, a volunteer with the Cedar Rapids American Cancer Society Office.

The CPS-3 is an ongoing study of people. It measure how lifestyle, environment, and behavior can increase cancer risk. Christy Thurman, with The American Cancer Society, said the two previous studies have helped link obesity and smoking to cancer.

"CPS-3 is going to be building on those two studies and hopefully finding new information," said Thurman.

"That's where Eastern Iowans come in. Without those people we can't unlock all the mystery's that cancer has," added Martin.

The Cedar Rapids Office is looking for at least 800 people to help them with research. Cancer Survivor, Cathy Loy, said it's a fairly painless way to help out.

"Give a little blood, fill out a survey once in a while," she said. Loy can't participate but showed up Tuesday to learn more information so she could help spread the word.

Participants must be 30 to 65 years of age and have no personal history of cancer. The person must also be willing to make a 20 to 30 year commitment in the study. However, leaders don't want the long-term commitment to scare people away because it's not that time consuming.

"Every 2 to 3 years we will be contacting study participants and asking them to fill out an additional survey and mailing that back to us," said Thurman.

Leaders said up-to-date research is key on their hunt for a cure and getting involved in the study is one of the easiest ways Eastern Iowans can make an impact.

"Without people volunteering for this, to collect a lot of data, the scientists can't get the answers we need," said Martin.

The registration event in Cedar Rapids is October 23 through the 27th. That's where you will get measured and have a small blood sample taken. Leaders urge people to pre-register online before the events.

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