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Center for American Indian and Alaska Native Diabetes Translation Research (CAIANDTR)

American Indians and Alaska Natives (AI/ANs) are at greater risk of becoming diabetic than any other segment of the U.S. population, suffer high rates of serious complications due to diabetes, and die prematurely as a consequence. The Center for American Indian and Alaska Native Diabetes Translational Research (CAIANDTR; P30DK092923) has been funded to extend prevention and management research of proven efficacy to both clinical and community settings, with the goal of improving the diabetes-related health of AI/ANs.

Special Diabetes Program for Indians
The CAIANDTR builds directly upon our decade long coordination of the Indian Health Service’s Special Diabetes Programs for Indians (SDPI)​. The SDPI is a congressionally mandated initiative designed to reduce diabetes incidence among AI/ANs with prediabetes and to reduce risk of cardiovascular disease among AI/ANs already suffering from diabetes. The former, known as the SDPI Diabetes Prevention Demonstration Project (SDPI-DP), funds 38 health care programs, representing a diverse mix of programs, serving 80 tribes in 18 states and 11 of the 12 IHS administrative areas. To date, these programs have delivered the 16 session Diabetes Prevention Program’s Lifestyle Balance Curriculum to more than 6,000 eligible AI/ANs, and achieved remarkable, well-documented success. Likewise, the latter, referred to as the SDPI Healthy Heart Demonstration Project (SDPI-HH), supports 30 health care programs, including seven IHS hospitals/clinics and 23 tribal health care or urban IHS-contracted programs, that serve 138 tribes in 13 states and each of the 12 IHS administrative areas. Employing intensive clinic- and multidisciplinary team-based case management, the SDPI-HH has served nearly 6,000 AI/AN diabetics, resulting in substantial reductions in their risk of cardiovascular disease. Both projects are continuing, and transforming the way in which the Indian Health Service has organized its efforts in this area.

The CAIANDTR provides core services and consultation locally, regionally, and nationally in areas relevant to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Disease’s (NIDDK) translational research agenda, specific to AI/ANs, but generalizable to other segments of the general population.

We have 4 specific aims:
  1. Provide an administrative structure that promotes excellence in translational research specific to improving diabetes-related health. Included within this core will be Pilot and Feasibility and Enrichment  programs;
  2. Convene a Research Base of funded UCD faculty;
  3. Institute and staff 4 Resource Cores (Engagement; Technology; Implementation, Dissemination, and Diffusion; and Sustainability) designed to facilitate a multidisciplinary, culturally grounded, problem-oriented translational research program of major scientific and programmatic importance; 
  4. Serve as a National Resource Core for other investigators around the country seeking to work with AI/AN communities, as well as to those struggling to pursue diabetes translational research in rural and other racial/ethnic minority populations.

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