Epidemiology of Rare Cancers in Canada: Developing a framework for surveillance, cost analysis and etiologic research

Principal Investigator: Dr. Faith Davis

Affiliation: University of Alberta

Start Year: 2018

Rare cancers make up approximately 25-35% of new cancer cases in Canada annually. However, relative to common cancers, rare cancers receive little scientific attention and financial support. Further logistical constraints result from Canada’s relatively small population, participant data from across the country must be combined to achieve sufficient numbers of rare cancer for statistical analysis. Consequently, the social burden, causes, and risk factors of rare cancer are poorly understood. This limits government policy, physicians, and participants from gaining the knowledge needed to make progress in improving participants outcomes. This project is a component of a larger project that aims to identify strategies to improve the efficiency of surveillance and etiologic research on rare cancers. Analysis from the Canadian Partnership for Tomorrow’s Health will assess the feasibility of using this multi-province cohort for research assessing risk factors for rare cancer, including gastric, esophageal and brain cancer.