||The NCI Consortium of Cohorts may have the
greatest research potential, with 23 population cohorts now involving one
and a half million subjects at the present time. Developing this initiative
was no easy task, and special credit goes to Bob Hoover for his vision and
his tenacity as the primary architect of the consortium which voluntarily
brings together separately funded investigators in diverse study populations
on an international scale. Each cohort has extensive risk factor data,
biospecimens including germline DNA collected at baseline, and thousands of
cancer cases. The cohorts include those mentioned here, the American Cancer
Society, EPIC in Europe, Multi-Ethnic Cohort in Hawaii and Los Angeles, The
Nurses Health Study and, of course PLCO, the study thatís being carried out
in collaboration with our division and the division of Cancer Prevention.
Within the cohortsí case, nested case-control studies of specific cancers
are conducted to identify the etiologic factors and pathways, including
molecular and biochemical markers of susceptibility, environmental
exposures, and outcomes including precursor states and early-stage tumors.
So this could be a goldmine for studies of proteomics. Since multiple
phenotypes can be evaluated in cohort studies, itís possible to detect
common or converging pathways that may underlie several forms of cancer and
possibly other chronic diseases.This schematic shows some of the well-known
cohorts participating in the consortium. Questionnaires provide risk factor
data, while the biospecimens provide biomarker data on genetic
susceptibility through candidate gene searches and whole genome scans, and
on metabolomics and proteomics.