Laurence N. Kolonel,
deputy director of the Cancer Research Center of Hawai‘i, is an internationally recognized scholar in the
fields of epidemiology and prostate cancer and explores the relationship
between diet and cancer. In his more than 25 years of service to
the University of Hawai‘i, Kolonel has published more than
200 articles in peer reviewed scientific journals.
Kolonel’s early published studies demonstrated the role of
environmental factors in the etiology of cancer leading to differential
incidence and mortality rates between ethnic groups. His pioneering
research demonstrated the importance of diet in the development
of cancer in humans.
Kolonel’s sustained funding and its phenomenal growth over
the years is a testament to both the quality of his research and
to its importance. This year he was honored with an R-37 MERIT
award from the National Institutes of Health and received 11 million
dollars over five years with a guaranteed extension. This is the
first award made to a University of Hawai‘i faculty member.
Kolonel received the award for his multiethnic cohort study of
diet and cancer, which includes more than 215,000 participants
in Hawai‘i and California and examines the influence of diet
and other lifestyle factors on cancer risk among Japanese Americans,
Native Hawaiians, Caucasians, African Americans and Latinos.