Breast Cancer & the Environmental Research Centers
This Center proposes a collaborative program to explore the reasons for the growing level of depressed age of menarche of girls in the United States and to define improved early markers for cancer susceptibility. The investigators will examine a population of white and African-American public school students to test the hypothesis that diet composition, especially fatty acids and phytoestrogens, and quantity contribute to adipose tissue levels and alter hormonal control of sexual maturation. The program will also focus on environmental exposure to agents such as endocrine disruptors and irradiation, as well as psychosocial elements. Clues to cellular and molecular mechanisms will be determined using state-of-the-art genomic microarray analysis and gene-engineered animal models. The Community Outreach and Translation Core, "Growing Up Female: Environmental Factors in Female Development and Disease," will facilitate interactions with the engaged community in the Cincinnati area and provide feedback of community concerns to the investigators.