UOG to Research Effects of Betel Nut Consumption and High Numbers of Cervical Cancer

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What’s significant is that the analysis will be done on Guam and will make contributions not only for the Pacific Islands but for research worldwide.

Guam – The University of Guam along with leading cancer researchers nationwide will be looking into cancer health disparities amongst Pacific Islanders in the next five years.

 
UOG, in partnership with the University of Hawaii Cancer Center received a five-year grant worth $4.5 million dollars from the National Institutes of Health and National Cancer Institute. With this partnership, their goal is to understand and reduce cancer health disparities unique to Pacific Islanders through research, outreach and education. UOG officials hosted a three-day meeting with cancer researchers last week and two of the proposed projects include research on the effects of betel nut consumption and looking into the high rate of cervical cancer amongst Pacific Islander women. With the grant, UOG President Dr. Robert Underwood explains, they’ll be able to get new equipment, conduct DNA testing, and collect biological samples. He says what’s significant is that the analysis will be done on Guam and will make contributions not only for the Pacific Islands but for research worldwide.
 
Underwood says, “We went through the projects in great detail. There’s some very unique projects that only this partnership is able to carry out. It’s focused on Pacific Islanders. One of the unique projects is trying to study the effects of betel nut consumption and oral lesions. Then we have other projects which is trying to figure out what communication system Pacific Islanders use to provide health care and we’re also doing an important study on cervical cancer.”
 
Underwood says the U54 grant and the recent EPSCoR grant award which gives $6 million to UOG for coastal ecosystems research point to the quick maturation of the University of Guam as a research institute.