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Interrelationships of Hormones, Diet, Body Size and Breast Cancer among Hispanic Women

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Annual summary, 1 Sep 2004-31 Aug 2005

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The purpose of this Minority Institution Partnership Training Award is to train University of Texas at Brownsville UTB faculty to conduct breast cancer research by collaborating with faculty from the University of Texas-Houston School of Public Health UTSPH. The training program will focus on breast cancer etiology, specifically the interrelationships between hormones, diet, body size, and breast cancer among Hispanic women in the Lower Rio Grande Valley LRGV. These women have a relatively low incidence of breast cancer compared with non-Hispanic white women, but in comparison with Hispanic women in the rest of the United States, the Hispanic women residing in the LRGV have a higher mortality from breast cancer. They also have an increased risk of insulin resistance. Women develop insulin resistance if they are genetically susceptible, gain excess weight due to physical inactivity, and consume a high-fat, low-fiber diet during adolescence and adulthood. It is clear that this area of research has promise with regard to explaining the different breast cancer incidence and mortality rates by ethnicity. Three UTB faculty will undergo intensive training provided by six UTSPH faculty during year one. The training will be provided to UTB faculty through classes, presentations, and seminars so they can gain knowledge of epidemiology, proposal development, behavioral sciences, and biostatistics. To reinforce this training, the two faculty groups will jointly design and conduct a clinic-based, case-control study that includes completion of a questionnaire, anthropometry, blood analysis, and urinalysis. The authors hypothesize that the case-control study that is planned, titled the South Texas Womens Health Project, will be useful in identifying factors associated with decreased breast cancer risk among Hispanic women.

Subject Categories:

  • Biochemistry
  • Medicine and Medical Research
  • Ecology
  • Food, Food Service and Nutrition

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