Posted on November 18, 2021

By Krystal Redman, Executive Director

A woman’s risk of breast cancer, as well as the risk for her children and future generations, increases when emigrating from a country of low breast cancer incidence to the United States.

Learning more about why this happens will help address gaps in research that need to be explored to better understand why living in the United States increases the risk of breast cancer. We are honored to announce that we’ve been selected as the convener for a collaborative research project funded by the California Breast Cancer Research Program (CBCRP) to understand multi-generational breast cancer risk factors for immigrant communities living in California.

The aim of this project, titled California Initiative to Prevent Breast Cancer in Immigrants (CIPBCI), is to understand how complex factors, with a focus on systems-level variables and social determinants of health, influence breast cancer risk across multiple generations of immigrant women. Further, the initiative aims to address how these factors are interrelated, mediated, or influenced by each other and change over time the longer someone lives in the United States and California.

Immigrant Health Announcement

In this central role as the convener, our organization will connect researchers to the lived experiences of people at risk of or living with breast cancer and facilitate a process that ensures collaboration and community engagement. Specifically, we will be collaborating with three different research teams that are looking to dive into risk factors unique to different immigrant populations, including Latina and Asian women and immigrant women in different occupations. And, we hope that our role in this project will elevate the importance of expanding further research that centers BIPOC, Afro-Caribbean, African, and Black immigrant communities as well.

We are interested in the impact of the social and built environment, the stressors that come with immigration, and related policy and enforcement factors, because it is a core belief of our organization that the responsibility of developing breast cancer must be shifted away from the individual, and to the corporations, policies, and systems that more directly impact breast cancer incidence and mortality rates.

This project deepens our commitment to exploring the unique challenges and priorities of communities of color, to ensure that fewer people develop or die from breast cancer and that no community bears a disproportionate burden of this disease. We are excited to play a pivotal role in this novel research endeavor, and to share what we’ve learned as the research develops.

With the launch of this research, Breast Cancer Action is now taking part in two important research projects made possible by the California Breast Cancer Research Program (CBCRP). We were also selected by the CBCRP to participate in a research project that will uncover industry knowledge about the links between environmental exposures and breast cancer.

Thank you for your partnership in envisioning a world without breast cancer, and your support that makes this work possible.