Project Details


Rationale: We believe that the elimination of prostate cancer health disparities can be accelerated through enhanced collaborations among institutes and the building of a partnership across disciplines that focuses on prostate cancer health disparities research and training of minority students.

Goals of the Training Program: Utilize the resources at North Shore LIJ-Hofstra School of Medicine and the Feinstein Institute of Medical Research for a transdisciplinary summer internship training in clinical and translational epidemiology and bio-behavioral science for four undergraduate Hampton University trainees per year. Trainees will be supported in achieving these goals by a one-to-one mentorship program that has been successfully implemented in the past. Trainees will be involved in research projects that address specific learning objectives, such as learning how to assess prostate cancer survival and how to analyze large databases to discover if health disparities exist in outcome according to therapy.

Program: Students will participate in didactic training involving introductory epidemiology research methods, prostate cancer biology, prostate cancer epidemiology, dietary risk factors, and prostate cancer and community-based research methods for prostate cancer early detection and control. They will attend weekly meetings with Dr. Taioli to discuss their progress and address specific questions that may have gone unanswered. They will participate in a hypothesis-driven research project under direct supervision of a North Shore LIJ-Hofstra faculty mentors, they will participate in a biweekly reading seminar where trainees will learn how to review and critique research articles as well as how to perform scientific presentations.

Mentors: Dr. Taioli is an epidemiologist, Dr. McDonald, a molecular epidemiologist, Dr. Gregersen, an immunogenetist, Dr. Pekmezaris, a community and public health researcher, Dr. Vira, a uro-oncologist. At Hampton, mentors are Dr. Andraos-Selim, a biologist, and Drs. Heyliger and Saulsbury, two pharmacologists.

Plan for Recruitment and Tracking: Hampton University faculty advisors will be responsible for trainee selection and recruitment in collaboration with Dr. Taioli. The program will be advertised in all sophomore and junior classes taken by biology, chemistry, and pharmacy students during the fall semester. Information packets will highlight the goals of the program, expected outcomes, and the requirements; they will be distributed and posted in the School of Science and School of Pharmacy and on the Hampton University Department of Biological Sciences and School of Pharmacy websites. Students will apply for this program early in the spring semester. Selection of students will be based on the students GPA, one-page essay, transcript, and letters of recommendations. We will follow our undergraduate trainees' educational and selected career paths and compare them with respect to peers. Outcomes include graduate/professional school applications and career track productivity. Long-term follow-up is planned, and outcomes will be compared to Hampton University Science baccalaureates aggregate. We are also proud of the fact that most of our previous trainees get in contact with us periodically with requests for letters of evaluation/letters of support for their applications to fellowships, graduate schools, etc.

Applicability: Trainees will work on projects that address how different treatments affect outcome and quality of life of prostate cancer patients. Other projects will also address palliate care and quality of life, physicians attitudes, and communication skills. Special attention is devoted to predictors of outcome in minority prostate cancer patients.

Impact: We know from previous experience with other training grants that a program such as this has a strong impact on students' attitude towards cancer prevention, cancer care, health disparities. The program also reinforces students' desire to apply to medical school and/or to other health-related graduate programs. It gives students a chance to learn about population studies, epidemiology, and public health as tools for tackling clinical problems.

Effective start/end date1/01/12 → …


  • Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs: $198,533.00


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