PHILADELPHIA (June 7, 2021 )— Researchers at Fox Chase Cancer Center have been awarded a $50,000 research grant from the MANNA Institute to measure the impact of a medically tailored meal program in patients with a non-terminal cancer diagnosis. The resulting research is intended to identify appropriate outcomes and potential evaluation tools that can be used to build a robust clinical trial protocol.
The MANNA Institute explores the impact of nutrition on health for people with serious illnesses. According to the institute, it leads research and evaluation initiatives, educates healthcare practitioners and consumers, and shares findings and best practices for improved service delivery and healthcare transformation.
“We are greatly honored to receive this grant from the MANNA Institute. My primary area of research is the intersection between nutrition and cancer, so this will greatly assist in that work,” said Rishi Jain, MD, MS, DABOM, assistant professor in the Department of Hematology/Oncology at Fox Chase. In addition to being a medical oncologist, Jain has an MS in human nutrition and is also board certified in obesity medicine.
Jain and Kara Stromberg, MS, RDN, CDE, LDN, clinical manager of nutrition and food services at Fox Chase Cancer Center and Temple University Hospital – Jeanes Campus, will be the principal investigators for the research, “A Medically Tailored Meal Program to Improve Chemotherapy Tolerance in Patients with Colorectal Cancer: A Pilot Study.”
The grant is one of two that are the first grants in the three-year history of the MANNA Institute. They are funded by the institute’s founding donors: John Alchin, Kevin R. Boyle, Dr. Lynn Garvin Dever, Julia Fleischner, Steven H. Korman, Linda Richardson Korman, and Allan Schimmel in honor of Reid Reames.
“We received multiple proposals from respected institutions across the Philadelphia region,” said MANNA Institute director Jule Anne Henstenburg, PhD, RDN, LDN, FAND. “We are so lucky to be in a city that continues to drive medical research and innovation. The MANNA Institute is the first research institution of its kind, and we look forward to continuing to innovate in the food-as-medicine space with our partners.”
The study will measure unique health outcomes in patients receiving MANNA’s medically tailored meals—three meals a day, seven days a week. The research projects are expected to conclude by June 2022.