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Fox Chase Cancer Center Researcher Awarded Grant from Lance Armstrong Foundation to Study Weight Loss Intervention in Colorectal Cancer Survivors

PHILADELPHIA (February 8, 2007) -- The Lance Armstrong Foundation has awarded Fox Chase Cancer Center psychologist Elliot Coups, Ph.D., a grant to study the effectiveness of an Internet-based intervention to help promote weight loss in overweight and obese survivors of colorectal cancer.

There are an estimated 1.1 million survivors of colorectal cancer in the U.S. Almost two-thirds of colorectal cancer survivors in the U.S. are overweight or obese. Being overweight or obese is linked with an increased risk for recurrence of colorectal cancer and death from the disease. They are also risk factors for developing other cancers.

"Despite the importance of the problem of overweight and obesity, there is a lack of research testing weight loss interventions for colorectal cancer survivors," explained Coups, an assistant member in the population science division at Fox Chase Cancer Center. "Colorectal cancer survivors are a large but relatively understudied survivor population, who might benefit greatly from health promotion efforts."

Coups' $108,000 grant for two years allows for a study involving an Internet-based weight loss intervention for colorectal cancer survivors. The study participants will include 60 overweight or obese colorectal cancer survivors who completed treatment for their cancer within the past 5 years. The participants will be randomly assigned to begin immediately using a weight loss website for a 12-week period or to wait for 12 weeks and then use the weight loss website for a 12-week period.

The goals of the study include finding out what impact the Internet-based intervention has on weight loss and future intentions for losing weight. The results of the study will provide necessary information for the development of large-scale studies of Internet-based weight loss interventions for survivors of colorectal and other cancers.

"There is considerable consumer demand for alternatives to in-person weight loss treatments, and previous research suggests that Internet-based interventions can promote weight loss in non-cancer populations," Coups added. "I'm grateful to the Lance Armstrong Foundation for its dedication to improving the lives of cancer survivors. Clearly, LIVESTRONG is more than just a motto - it's a mission."

The Lance Armstrong Foundation (LAF) inspires and empowers people affected by cancer. From the moment of diagnosis, the LAF provides the practical information and tools people with cancer need to live life on their own terms. The LAF serves its mission through advocacy, public health and research. Founded in 1997 by cancer survivor and champion cyclist Lance Armstrong, the LAF is located in Austin, Texas. For more information, visit

Fox Chase Cancer Center, part of the Temple University Health System, is one of the leading cancer research and treatment centers in the United States. Founded in 1904 in Philadelphia as one of the nation’s first cancer hospitals, Fox Chase was also among the first institutions to be designated a National Cancer Institute Comprehensive Cancer Center in 1974. Fox Chase researchers have won the highest awards in their fields, including two Nobel Prizes. Fox Chase physicians are also routinely recognized in national rankings, and the Center’s nursing program has received the Magnet recognition for excellence four consecutive times. Today, Fox Chase conducts a broad array of nationally competitive basic, translational, and clinical research, with special programs in cancer prevention, detection, survivorship, and community outreach.  For more information, call 1-888-FOX CHASE or (1-888-369-2427).

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