Funded Research with International Components
Several Applied Research Program (ARP) research initiatives involve international collaborations.
ARP staff are collaborating with investigators at the University of Basel in Switzerland and the National University of Singapore to develop and preliminarily validate translations of the PRO-CTCAE item library. Collaborations with colleagues at the University of Tokyo have also produced a Japanese translation of the PRO-CTCAE item library, and linguistic validation of those items will begin soon. ARP staff are also collaborating with a team at the University of Bonn in Germany to further test and refine the German-language PRO-CTCAE items in an upcoming study. The study will examine the effects on patient outcomes of an interdisciplinary service delivery model that integrates physicians, nurses, and pharmacists into the care of medically complex patients. A key step in promoting widespread implementation of PRO-CTCAE in international and U.S. trials is the availability of translated and linguistically- and culturally-adapted instrument versions. ARP staff (Dr. Sandra Mitchell) will be able to distribute the translated item libraries to other national and international investigators who are interested in using PRO-CTCAE in their studies.
The National Cancer Institute (NCI), the University of Roma Tor Vergata, and the Institute for Research on Population & Social Policies (IRPPS) co-sponsored a workshop, "Combining Epidemiology & Economics for Measurement of Cancer Costs," September 21 - 24, 2010, in Villa Mondragone, Italy. The objectives of this international meeting, which included health economists, statisticians and epidemiologists from multiple European countries, the US and Canada, were to: compare and discuss different methodologies developed in country-specific contexts, in terms of data availability, prevention and health care policies, and health care systems; and improve a dialogue among fields of research and among countries with the common aim to estimate present and future burden and costs of cancer. By examining the current approaches to cancer cost determination, this ongoing research will try to answer questions about whether it is feasible to look for a standardized evaluation method and the potential advantages, limitations, and challenges in developing standardized methods and estimates.
Dietary Assessment Tools
ARP staff led the development of the Automated Self-administered 24-hour Dietary Recall (ASA24), a freely available, web-based software tool that can be used for epidemiologic, intervention, behavioral, or clinical research. International investigators have expressed interest in adapting ASA24, including in Canada and the United Kingdom.
The Diet History Questionnaire (DHQ) is a freely available food frequency questionnaire developed by ARP staff. ARP also staff adapted the DHQ for use by Canadian populations in collaboration with the Alberta Cancer Board. This questionnaire takes into account the different food fortification polices of the US and Canada. A Dietary Assessment Resource Manual, co-authored by ARP staff, was translated into Spanish and published by the Instituto de Nutricion de Centro America Y Panama (INCAP) in 2006. DHQ II is the current version of the questionnaire distributed by the NCI.
Folate Exposure Cohort Follow-up Study
This follow-up study of a cohort that began in the 1990s involves collaboration of staff in ARP as well as other staff with the Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences, Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics, NIH Office of Dietary Supplements, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention. The cohort includes women who were or were not exposed to folate during pregnancy, and their children. The original study found significantly fewer birth defects for the folate group. The follow-up study’s objectives are to examine childhood cancer incidence and biological and other risk factors for adult cancers.
The SEER-Medicare database links two large population-based data sources: the Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) program of cancer registries and Medicare claims for covered health services. It can be used for an array of epidemiological and health services research. SEER-Medicare data are informing end-of-life care in Ontario, Canada. ARP staff are collaborating with the University of Toronto and Toronto Regional Cancer Center on: a comparison of SEER-Medicare with Ontario’s claims data systems to examine patterns and costs of care in lung cancer; and a study of the effectiveness of colonoscopy in preventing colorectal cancer death.