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Help sought for cancer study
Third large-scale project since 1950s
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Forsyth County News

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For more information about the CPS-3, including how to register for the March 12 and 13 event at the Forsyth County Family YMCA, visit or call (888) 604-5888.

YMCA facilities around metro Atlanta have teamed up with the American Cancer Society to enroll residents in a cancer prevention study.

The Forsyth County Family YMCA, off Post Road in west Forsyth, will hold enrollment events for the Cancer Prevention Study 3, or CPS-3, on March 12 and 13.

The study will follow enrollees for 20 to 30 years to help researchers better understand the lifestyle, environmental and genetic factors that can cause or prevent cancer.

The society aims to sign up 5,000 metro Atlanta residents and 300,000 people throughout the U.S. and Puerto Rico for the study.

It is the third large-scale cancer prevention study in the society’s history. The first, which began in the 1950s, discovered a link between smoking and cancer. The second, which began in the 1980s, found ties to obesity.

Amy Richardson, American Cancer Society community manager for Forsyth and Dawson counties, said she and other society leaders hope to enroll at least 200 people at the local event.

“Right now we have about 120 appointments for the days at the Y, and we’re still looking for people,” she said.

Appointments are being taken for those interested in signing up for the study. They can do so online at

Appointments will be open from 8 to 11:30 a.m. March 12 and 3 to 7 p.m. March 13.

While walk-ins will also be accepted during those time frames, Richardson said those interested should pre-register online to save time. Otherwise, the in-person enrollment can take about an hour.

“It helps them because they’re able to do the largest bulk of the survey at home because [organizers] will e-mail it to them,” she said.

Men and women between the ages of 30 and 65 who have never been diagnosed with cancer are urged to participate.

There is no cost. Participants will be asked to read and sign an informed consent form and complete the survey with information on lifestyle, behavioral and other factors related to their health.

In addition, they will be asked to have their waist circumference measured and give a small blood sample.

Participants will then be sent periodic follow-up surveys every few years, as well as annual newsletters with study updates and results.

Richardson encouraged participation due to the impact it could have on cancer prevention.

“This is our legacy to our children and grandchildren,” she said. “This study is going to impact future generations and it’s our way to make a difference in their lives now.”