Tuesday, October 19, 2010
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Look for Mayo Clinic rolling through town in the next few months, as the Mobile Mayo Clinic Research Unit comes to the Valley from October through February.
The RV-style vehicle, which was funded through a grant from the National Institutes of Health, is a self-contained mobile research facility and is one of the few of its kind in the country. The vehicle makes it possible for researchers to bring research studies directly to communities that may face health care access or transportation challenges. In addition, the vehicle can travel to venues such as universities and shopping malls that attract a large and diverse population. The unit includes two exam rooms, equipment for lab processing, and a private area for patient interviews and audiovisual technology for patient education.
During the time the unit is in Arizona it will be used for an extension of an approved study being run in conjunction with Arizona State University called the Maricopa County Insulin Resistance Initiative. Led by Lawrence Mandarino, Ph.D., the study examines metabolic syndrome (diabetes, obesity, insulin resistance) among Latinos. Individuals and families who self-identify as Latino will be invited to participate. Potential participants will be screened (in-person or over the phone) to explain study purpose, inclusion / exclusion, and study procedures. Participants will be scheduled to go to convenient sites off campus where we will use the Mobile Unit, for study-related procedures.
"The most important part of this study provides a resource to connect physicians and researchers with a patient population that is extremely affected by these diseases," Dr. Mandarino said. "Creating a link will allow us to do interventions in this population so we can understand how to prevent progression of these diseases and not so much by a pharmacological approach but by lifestyle approach."
While the unit is in Arizona, it may also be used for other approved studies and appropriate community events.
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