The Lustgarten Equity, Accessibility, and Diversity (LEAD) Project

research scientist studying petri dish under a microscope.

Pancreatic cancer does not impact all populations equally – significant differences are evidenced in incidence rates and disparities in outcome across racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic groups. The Lustgarten Equity, Accessibility, and Diversity (LEAD) Project was created to address these discrepancies by increasing the recruitment and retention of underrepresented groups in pancreatic cancer clinical trials. The supported projects are designed to identify and address barriers to participation and develop and implement specific tools to expand community outreach, patient education, and/or clinical recruitment staff. 


  • Applications must be submitted through ProposalCentral by February 2, 2024
  • Applicants selected for funding will be notified by June, with the earliest anticipated start in July.
  • Read the complete RFA Details for more information.



Fiyinfolu Balogun, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, for his study “Investigating the molecular bases of pancreatic cancer disparities in underserved minority communities and increasing clinical trial recruitment employing linguistic intervention.”


Karyn Goodman, MD, MS, Vice Chair of Radiation Oncology and Associate Director of Clinical Research at Tisch Cancer Institute, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. Goodman was awarded for her study entitled “Navigating Pancreatic Cancer Multidisciplinary Care to Address Cultural and Language Barriers to Clinical Trial Enrollment among Mandarin and Spanish Speaking Patients with Pancreatic Cancer.”

Rebecca Snyder, MD, MPH, Associate Professor in the Departments of Surgical Oncology and Health Services Research at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.  Synder was awarded for her study entitled “IMPACT Diversity: An Integrated Multi-level Plan to Address Clinical Trial Diversity.”


Jen Jen Yeh, MD, Professor and Vice Chair of Research, Surgery, Division of Oncology Professor, Pharmacology Member, UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center. The inaugural LEAD grant was awarded to Dr. Yeh for her PROmoting CLinicAL TrIal EngageMent for Pancreatic Cancer App Study (PROCLAIM Study). The PROCLAIM Study, in partnership with Dr. Ugwuji Maduekwe, MD, and her team at the Medical College of Wisconsin, will focus on breaking down barriers to recruiting diverse populations, such as distrust, poor communication, racial bias, and culturally discordant clinical trial materials, via a mobile health technology initiative.  

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