Discipline: Biological Sciences
Subcategory: Cancer Research
Grace C. Ikenga - Jackson State University
Co-Author(s): Dr. Mark A Dugo, Dr. Clement Yedjou, and Erika B. Dugo; Mississippi Valley State University, Jackson State University
According to the American Cancer Society, it is estimated that about 107,000 women will be diagnosed and 32,000 women will die from gynecologic cancer in 2017. Gynecologic cancer originates in the reproductive organs of the female. The reproductive cancer sites of interest within this study included ovarian, cervical, endometrium, uterus, vagina and vulva. The purpose of this research study was to assess and compare incidence and mortality rates of gynecologic cancers from 2003-2013 among African American and Caucasian female populations within the United States and Mississippi. The National Cancer Institute’s Surveillance Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) Program was accessed to acquire national data. To assess state trends for MS, we queried the Mississippi Cancer Registry which is made available through cooperative support of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the University of Mississippi Medical Center. Trends of incidence and mortality for female reproductive cancers were analyzed in context of potential socioeconomic and environmental risk factors. At the national level SEER data reveal that racial disparities are apparent. The SEER data reveal that African American women are at a higher risk for female reproductive cancer incidence than Caucasian women with 101.43 per 100,000 compared to 92.56 per 100,000. African American women also have a significantly higher mortality rate of 19.5 per 100,000 compared to Caucasian women with a rate of 14.65 per 100,000. Data from the MS Cancer Registry also reveal racial disparities of incidence and mortality for female reproductive cancers in Mississippi. Caucasians in MS experience an incidence rate of 45.01 and a mortality rate of 13.37 compared to 47.9 and 21.25 for African Americans, respectively. Mortality rates in Mississippi are among the highest in the nation are driven by disproportionally higher rates of mortality in the Mississippi Delta Region, which is one of the most persistently impoverished regions in the country. Lower socioeconomic status has been correlated to higher rates of cancer mortality and is attributable in part to a lack of early detection and low access to quality healthcare. Our findings suggest that further research is needed into the causality of racial disparity for female reproductive cancers. In addition to the need to better delineate socioeconomic factors that drive racial disparities in cancer mortality, potential environmental justice issues and genetic predispositions should be considered as factors that drive racial disparities. Delineating causality and better identifying risk factors involved in the prevalence of female reproductive cancers may assist decision makers in taking optimal actions for future prevention and treatment. We encourage outreach activities that increase awareness and underscore the need for access to affordable screening, particularly among socioeconomically challenged population groups.
Key References: U.S. Cancer Statistics Working Group. (2009). United States cancer statistics: 1999?2005 incidence and mortality web-based report. Atlanta: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and National Cancer Institute. Accessed at http://apps.nccd.cdc.gov/uscs/.
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), Healthy People 2010. (n.d. ). Healthy people 2010 online documents. Retrieved from http://www.healthypeople.gov/Document/
Acknowledgment of funders:
Mississippi Valley State University Graduate Student Scholarship
; National Institutes of Health through the RCMI-Center for Environmental Health at Jackson State University
Funder Acknowledgement(s): MVSU Graduate Student Scholarship ; National Institutes of Health through the RCMI-Center for Environmental Health at Jackson State University
Faculty Advisor: Dr. Mark A. Dugo, firstname.lastname@example.org
Role: I conducted the research analysis on each female reproductive cancers using the Mississippi Cancer registry and the Surveillance Epidemiology and End results(SEER) databases to query the incidence and mortality rates and the population trends among Caucasians and African Americans. I also included literature reviews and bibliographies of relevant papers to identify publications on female reproductive cancer survival. I also used the excel spreadsheets to create the charts and graphs of the Incidence and Mortality rates among the Caucasians and African Americans populations.