According to the National Institutes of Health, approximately 90 percent of anal cancer is caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV).
In spite of this knowledge, researchers do not have accurate estimates of the prevalence of HPV in men who have sex with men. They also lack optimal methods for determining who in this population is at greatest risk for developing anal cancer.
Shalini Kulasingam, M.P.H., Ph.D., an epidemiology and community health faculty member at the U and recipient of Masonic pilot support, is determined to address these challenges.
Kulasingam and her team are leading a study of three potential HPV tests to identify men in this population who are at high risk for anal cancer. They are currently conducting this research in a small group of participants and hope to use the data they collect to secure federal funds to expand their work. If successful, their efforts could help hone the most effective methods for early detection and, ultimately, lead to the prevention of anal cancer in numerous men.
“My colleagues and I are grateful for this funding and the opportunities it’s providing.”