Abramson Cancer Center | Leonard Davis Institute
Center for Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics | National Black Leadership Initiative on Cancer
Abramson Cancer Center (ACC) at the University of Pennsylvania
The ACC is an NCI-designated comprehensive cancer center that was founded in 1973 and recently renamed to serve as the focus of cancer-related research, patient care, and educational activities at the University of Pennsylvania. John H. Glick, M.D., has served as the Center's Director for the past 12 years. The ACC provides an organizational framework that promotes and enhances interdisciplinary cancer research within the School of Medicine and throughout the University. Its mission is defined through seven primary objectives: develop and support cancer-focused Research Programs (basic, clinical, translational, and cancer control) that are interdisciplinary and interdepartmental in nature; develop and support interdepartmental educational and research training programs for physicians, scientists, students, nurses, and others; recruit and support new faculty with a commitment to cancer research; facilitate investigator col-laboration within and among Research Programs; develop and manage Shared Resources; acquire and allocate labora-tory space for active cancer researchers; and foster interdisciplinary patient care programs and activities. The ACC has more than 330 physicians and scientists in 41 University Departments and 8 schools. Most Cancer Center members are from the School of Medicine, while others are from the Schools of Veterinary Medicine, Dental Medicine, Nursing, Social Work, Wharton Business, and Arts and Sciences. ACC members have over $63 million of extramural funding. Collaborative working relationships are well-established among ACC members from different Departments and Schools as is evidenced in all aspects of ACC research, patient care and educational activities. The ACC has provided substantial direct support to this CPHHD in terms of support for faculty salary, program development, and resource infrastructure (see description of institutional commitment).
The Leonard Davis Institute (LDI)
Since 1967, LDI has been the center of the University of Pennsylvania's activities and programs in health services research, health policy, and health care management executive education. as a formal cooperative venture among Penn's schools of medicine, business, nursing, and dental medicine, LDI represents one of the earliest efforts to pro-mote collaborative scholarship in health care through formal partnerships within the same university among the clini-cal, management, and social sciences.. Through conferences, seminars, and publications, LDI translates the results of health services research into a form that is useful and accessible to public and private decision makers. LDI Senior Fel-lows include about 150 of the most distinguished scholars in health, management, economics, ethics and the social sci-ences. Last year, LDI Senior Fellows received approximately $30 million in research grants.
LDI has developed an innovative policy dissemination program that is used by many investigators at Penn to reach key audiences and analyze the policy implications of research results. LDI's Policy and Research Program (PreP) iden-tifies opportunities for dissemination of results beyond academic journals and professional meetings, and tailors mate-rials to targeted groups of policymakers in the community and public and private sector. LDI publishes monthly Issue Briefs, which are four-page summaries of research results that highlight their social and policy relevance. They are written in easy-to-understand language with bullet points, headers, margin cut-outs and other devices to enhance deliv-ery of the message. They are professionally written, formatted, printed and distributed to an LDI mailing list of more than 4,000 researchers, clinicians, administrators, federal, state and local; legislators and officials, and industry and community leaders. For each Issue Brief, LDI works with investigators to identify key audiences that are not on the general mailing list. In addition to hard copy mailings, these Issue Briefs are also posted on relevant web sites to in-crease their reach and accessibility. PreP offers other materials and services as each project or center requires, such as downloadable slide presentations, consensus development conferences, or policy roundtables. This program is a central feature of the CPHHD.
Center for Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics (CCEB)
The CCEB was created in February 1993. Through its predecessor, the Clinical Epidemiology Unit (CEU), now subsumed within the CCEB, the CCEB has been involved actively in clinically oriented epidemiologic teaching and research since 1978. It is the primary home for epidemiology and biostatistics at the University of Pennsylvania. The CCEB has been directed by Brian L. Strom, M.D., M.P.H. since 1980 (then the CEU). The CCEB launched a major expansion in 1995 to create a Biostatistics Unit (BU) to match the depth and breadth of the CEU. The extension of the CCEB's biostatistics program led to the recruitment of J. Richard Landis, Ph.D., to provide senior leadership for the rapidly expanding BU. Dr. Landis joined the CCEB in 1997 and brought with him a Clinical Research Computing Unit (CRCU), designated as a core research facility providing "state of the art" services for clinical data management and research computing.
The CCEB is an interdisciplinary and interdepartmental program. Its mission is to improve the health of the public by linking epidemiology, biostatistics, and clinical medicine, bringing epidemiologic research methods to clinical re-search, clinical insight to epidemiologic research, and an understanding of research methodology to clinical medicine. CCEB activities focus on the performance of clinical epidemiologic research, biostatistical research and methodology development, the conduct of multicenter clinical trials, collaboration with biomedical and clinical researchers across diverse scientific disciplines, and curriculum development and teaching of clinical epidemiology and biostatistics at the undergraduate and post-graduate levels. The CCEB was awarded approximately $22 million in extramural grants in 2000-2001 alone, and counts among the top 5 U.S. programs in Biostatistics or Epidemiology in extramural funding.
National Black Leadership Initiative on Cancer (NBLIC)
We have an ongoing relationship with Philadelphia Chapter of the NBLIC, and will work together with this organization in the development and implementation of this CPHHD. The Philadelphia chapter of NBLIC was founded in 1992 as part the National Cancer Institute's program to establish a national system of community-based outreach for cancer prevention and control in the African American population. The overall objective of the NBLIC is to develop, implement, and support community-based programs for cancer prevention and control; specific activities of the Philadelphia chapter of the NBLIC include development of applied research projects and implementation of community outreach and education programs for cancer prevention and control. The NBLIC's goals are: 1) to reduce cancer incidence and mortality rates; 2) to improve cancer survival rates; and 3) to address the barriers that limit or prevent African Americans from gaining access to quality cancer control services. The Philadelphia chapter has been actively involved in cancer prevention and control initiatives in the African American community. Past work has included successful efforts that prevented targeted marketing of tobacco products to the African American community. Since 1999, the NBLIC's activities have been focused on reducing morbidity and mortality for breast, colon, and prostate cancer. Currently, the NBLIC members represent community organizations, public health officials, health care providers, and academic institutions.
Our partnership with the NBLIC began in 2001 with discussions about the complementary goals of the ACC, the Community and Minority Cancer Prevention and Control Initiative (CMCI), and the NBLIC to identify areas of mutu-ally beneficial collaborations. This provided the foundation upon which the proposed collaboration for this CHHD is based (see Project 4 for detailed discussion of the developmental process). For example, through this partnership, the ACC and NBLIC have developed and implemented community information symposia related to breast cancer in Afri-can American women and participated in a church-based prostate cancer screening program. We are also working to-gether to develop and implement cancer education programs through a community health referral network. While the partnership that is proposed for the CHHD is the first formal partnership for research, we believe that our prior work together in community education, extensive discussion about our respective objectives and missions, and past and on-going dialogue about research priorities has provided a strong foundation for the proposed partnership and has placed us in an ideal position to ensure a successful and mutually beneficial collaboration through this CHHD.