By Pat Loeb

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphians are being asked to take part in research that could lead to breakthroughs in the prevention of cancer.  And it will be especially easy if you’re running the Broad Street ten-miler on May 6th.

The American Cancer Society is looking for people between the ages of 30 and 65 to participate in “Cancer Prevention Study 3,” a long-term, national study exploring the role of genetics in cancer development.

At a press conference today outside Philadelphia City Hall, Dr. Anil Rustgi (at lectern in photo) explained that participants will give a small blood specimen — from which researchers can identify their genetic makeup — and must commit to updating their health information periodically for the next 20 to 30 years.

“And then (we’ll) see what’s the demographic factors in that individual and what happens to that individual over decades,” Dr. Rustgi added. “Could there be some genetic basis that could be used as a bio-marker to see who might be at increased risk for cancer?”

Rustgi, a researcher at the University of Pennsylvania school of medicine, says past studies revealed such breakthroughs as the link between smoking and lung cancer.  It’s hoped this one will help eliminate cancer as a major health concern for future generations.

If you’re entered in the Broad Street Run on May 6th, you can sign up for the study when you pick up your race number.  For more information, go to .

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