The Connect study is a new prospective cohort of 200,000 adults in the United States designed to further investigate the etiology of cancer and its outcomes, which may inform new approaches in precision prevention and early detection. The new cohort will capitalize on research innovations to advance the field of cancer epidemiology and prevention including:
- New technologies (e.g., tracking and sensors to measure behavior and environment);
- Large-scale analyses of the genome, epigenome, transcriptome, proteome, metabolome, microbiome;
- Molecular profiling of tumors and precursor lesions to study the natural history of cancer and its etiologic heterogeneity.
Overview of Study Setting and Design
The Connect study will be conducted within a set of integrated health care systems, with electronic medical records (EMRs), a passive follow-up system that is both cost effective and thorough. Consented participants ages 40-65 with no history of invasive cancer other than non-melanoma skin cancer from participating health systems will complete an online questionnaire at baseline and periodically throughout the duration of follow-up. Passive follow-up via tumor registries and EMRs will provide outcome information for cancers and their precursors. Blood, urine and saliva samples will be collected at baseline and repeatedly during follow-up in local clinics. Additional biological specimens including fecal and tissue specimens will be collected. This state-of-the-art cohort will be built with an efficient, flexible and integrated infrastructure that makes the most of modern interoperability standards in order to serve as a research workhorse for future generations of scientists at the NCI and across the extramural research community.
The Connect study is supported by the NIH Intramural Research Program.
Initial contracts were awarded to the following institutions:
- HealthPartners, Minneapolis, MN
- Henry Ford Health System, Detroit, MI
- Kaiser Permanente Colorado, Denver, CO
- Kaiser Permanente Hawaii, Honolulu, HI
- Kaiser Permanente Northwest, Portland, OR
- Marshfield Health Clinic, Marshfield, WI
- Sanford Health, Sioux Falls, SD
- University of Chicago Medical Center, Chicago, IL
- NORC at the University of Chicago, Chicago, IL
For more information, contact Michelle Brotzman at EpiCohortNCI@mail.nih.gov.