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LIVE At the Lab: Defeating Cancer in the Pacific Islands

photo of Kevin Cassel in front of the University of Hawaii Cancer Center building
Kevin Cassel, assistant professor at the University of Hawai’i Cancer Center, discusses Pacific Island community culture as a means of putting cancer control practices into place.

The US has developed many methods to treat and prevent cancer. However, some communities experience relatively higher rates of cancer-related deaths. Kevin Cassel, assistant professor at the University of Hawai’i Cancer Center, explores effective ways to put cancer control practices into place. He works with US-affiliated Pacific Island populations, understanding their cultural norms to engage them in better care. Cassel is also using his expertise to encourage Pacific Islanders to get tested and vaccinated for COVID-19 during the pandemic.

Kevin Cassel is from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. One of his first jobs was to work the phone line at a local cancer information service. From that experience, he realized the importance of connecting the public with relevant science information when they need it. Cassel received his Ph.D. in community-based translational research from the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. He is now an assistant professor in the population sciences program at the University of Hawai’i Cancer Center.

Written by: Jasmine Lee, Content Developer/Communicator | jaslee@cshl.edu | 516-367-5940

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