DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): On an international level, the highest incidence rates for pancreatic cancer occur among US blacks and among Caucasian populations in Central Europe, in particular in Czech Republic and Slovakia. The reason for this high incidence is not known. We will conduct a pilot for a multicentre case-control study of pancreatic cancer in 5 centers within the high risk region of Czech Republic and Slovakia in order to investigate the role of established and potential risk factors, as well as to generate a biorepository for future molecular and genetic epidemiology studies. This pilot study will build on previous large case- control studies that were successfully conducted in these centres on lung and kidney cancer. Our proposed study will have a strong focus on the role of lifestyle and occupational risk factors including tobacco and alcohol, as well as exposure to specific metals, solvents and pesticides. It will also incorporate the following important characteristics: Ultra rapid case identification (i.e. identify and interview cases within weeks of initial diagnosis); Population based case identification (i.e. try to recruit all cases occurring in a particular geographical region) and recruitment of population controls, as well as a high response rate for both; Extensive collection of biological samples including blood samples, viable lymphocytes, pancreatic juice and tumor tissue. The long term aim is to establish the foundation for a population based case-control study in this region, which will be conducted in collaboration with other similar initiatives in the US and elsewhere, and contribute to any future consortium of pancreatic cancer studies. Public health relevance: The causes of pancreatic cancer remain largely unknown. This pilot study of pancreatic cancer in this high risk population is a necessary step before a full study can be undertaken. The results of a full study have the potential to identify important lifestyle and occupational risk factors for pancreatic cancer and inform future prevention efforts against pancreatic cancer.
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