Today Stand Up To Cancer® (SU2C) unveiled a collaborative initiative aimed at improving colorectal cancer screening, early detection and prevention across the United States. The transformative $10 million grant from Exact Sciences, a provider of cancer screening and diagnostic tests, will fund a colorectal cancer ‘Dream Team’ of researchers, as well as a comprehensive public awareness campaign to increase screenings.
The new Dream Team will be awarded in early 2021 and will identify communities near anchor institutions that serve minority and medically underserved communities, pinpoint the unique local needs of those areas and turn participating at-risk communities into “Stand Up To Cancer Zones” with high rates of colorectal cancer screening. The Dream Team will provide free colorectal cancer testing in the identified zones and will study samples collected via approved tests for colorectal cancer, including colonoscopy, CT colonography, flexible sigmoidoscopy, and at-home stool tests that analyze fecal DNA and/or blood. The research will aim to develop better approaches to colorectal cancer interception.
Fellowships for early-career investigators committed to studying health equity and disparities in colorectal cancer will also be funded. Public awareness campaigns will focus on medically underserved communities to increase awareness of the importance of colorectal cancer screening and early detection, and the availability of multiple effective screening options, such as traditional colonoscopy as well as options used at home.