CaRE2 Center


The center, called CaRE2, is short for the Florida-California Cancer Research, Education and Engagement Health Equity Center. Funding for this project will be equally distributed across Institutions partnering with FAMU, including the University of Florida and the University of Southern California, also known as the “Triad.” At FAMU, this project is spearheaded by Program Directors Renee Reams, Ph.D., and Kinfe Redda, Ph.D. 



CaRE2 Summer Undergraduate Trainees working in the lab at FAMU College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Institute of Public Health
CaRE2 Summer Undergraduate Trainees working in the lab at FAMU College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Institute of Public Health



The cancer health differences among whites and African-Americans or Latinos are particularly stark. For example, for all cancers combined, the death rate is 25 percent higher for African-Americans than whites, according to the National Cancer Institute. Latinos have the highest rates for infection-related cancers, such as liver, stomach, and cervical cancers.

Leaders of this “Triad” collectively have expertise in translational genomics (a branch of biotechnology); molecular epidemiology; cancer health disparity, drug discovery; predictors of health disparities and intervention; and management of cancer pain and end-of-life issues. This five-year partnership grant funds the following core components at all three institutions:

  • Administrative
  • Planning and Evaluation
  • Three Hypothesis-Driven Cancer Research Projects (Pancreatic & Prostate)
  • Virtual Tumor Tissue Repository
  • Biostatistics and Informatics
  • Research Education and Training for students as well as junior faculty
  • Community Engagement

The grant will also support efforts for FAMU to provide research-training opportunities for underrepresented undergraduate and graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, and early-stage investigators (ESI) and promote their research and career development.

A key goal is to diversify the research workforce focused on cancer and health disparities. The new center aims to train 125 young scientists, ranging from those who’ve just completed bachelor’s degrees, graduate students, postdoctoral students, and early-career scientists



It gives us great pleasure to invite you to learn more about our Cancer Research Education and Engagement (CaRE2) Center for Health Equity.

Renee Reams, Ph.D.
Renee Reams, Ph.D.

The CaRE2 Center was officially established on September 19, 2018, when we received notice from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) that our application for a Comprehensive Partnership to Address Cancer Health Equities (CPACHE) in Black and Latino Population had been funded. Our bi-coastal partnership was proposed by Florida A&M University, the University of Florida, and the University of Southern California-Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center (USC-NCCC). Our goal is to work together to eliminate cancer health disparities in Florida, California, and nationally.

Kinfe Redda, Ph.D. 
Kinfe Redda, Ph.D. 

Our long-term goals as a center are to reduce cancer disparities in Blacks and Latinos and train/increase the pool of underrepresented Black and Latino scientists conducting health disparity research at UF and USC-NCCC. Our bi-coastal locations offer access to uniquely diverse populations of Black and Latinos, facilitating in an unprecedented way the study of cancer disparities in these very heterogeneous populations.




Dr. Charles Weatherford
Chair, Executive Leadership
Dr. C. Perry Brown 
Chair, Internal Advisory Committee
Dr. Hernan Flores-Rozas
Tissue Modeling Core Leader
Dr. Bereket Mochona
Research Education Core Leader
Dr. Renee Reams
Admin & Project 1 Scientist
Dr. Eun-Sook Lee
Pilot Project Scientist
Dr. Edward Agyare
Pilot Project 4 Scientist
Dr. Camille Ragin
Program Steering Committee Member 
Dr. Sandra Suther
Community Outreach Core Leader

Dr. Zhenbang Chen
Program Steering Committee Member 

Dr. Ukamaka Smith
Planning and Evaluation Core Leader

Dr. Knife Redda
Admin & Research Education Core Co-Leader
Dr. Clayton Yates
Program Steering Committee Member 
Dr. Nazarius Lamango
Pilot Project 3 Scientist
Dr. Sarah Buxbaum
Pilot Project 2 Scientist


CaRE2 Health Equity Center Program Organizational Chart








Floya Fisher, B.S.
Coordinator of Research Programs

Cancer Research and Education Engagement (CaRE2)

Florida A&M University
College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Institute of Public Health