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Research Opportunities

Here at Cactus Cancer Society, we’re always interested in amplifying the voices and experiences of young adults facing cancer, and making sure this population is represented in research.  Check out the research opportunity below to see how you can use your story to help others!

The BurnAlong Study: A Virtual Peer-Based Physical Activity Network for Young Adult Cancer Survivors

Study Description​

We are currently conducting a study to understand Young Adult (ages 18-25) cancer survivors’ experiences with a virtual app-based physical activity program, BurnAlong. Participants can be new to exercise as this program is individualized and adaptive.

Our goal is to ultimately develop quality physical activity programs for Young Adult cancer survivors that promote long-term physical, psychological, and social health.

Am I eligible to participate?​

This study is open to:

  • Cancer (all types) diagnosis between the ages of 15-25
  • Between the ages of 18-25 during study participation
  • At least 3 months post-active treatment completion
  • Access to and ability to use a computer, tablet, or phone device with internet access
  • Ability to understand and read English
  • Answers “no” to all questions on the Physical Activity Readiness Questionnaire
  • Not currently meeting physical activity guidelines per leisure-time physical activity participation questionnaire
  • Written and informed consent obtained from participant and ability for participant to comply with the requirements of the study
  • Not currently pregnant
  • No planned active treatment within 3 months of the study start date
  • No hearing loss or vision impairment that would preclude the participant from accessing and using the app (use of hearing aids or visual aids is acceptable) based on self-report

What will I be asked to do?​

Young Adult cancer survivors will be given access to BurnAlong, a virtual physical activity platform, and asked to engage in 3 physical activity sessions with a friend or family member a week for three months.

They will also have access to a private social network group for adolescent and Young Adult cancer survivors and will be asked to post at least 2 times per week for three months.

Participants will be asked to participate in a monthly group exercise session led by our team’s Exercise Physiologist along with other study participants.

Participants will be mailed a Fitbit and asked to wear it and sync its data over the course of the three month intervention.

Will I be compensated?​

Participants will be given a Fitbit device.

How do I sign up?

Email the study coordinator, Jessica Capaldi at or the principal investigator, Dr. Celina Shirazipour at

Describing Asian American Well-being and Needs in Cancer (DAWN) Study

Study Description

We would like to invite you to share your experiences to help improve the quality of life for Asian Americans diagnosed with metastatic cancer. The study seeks to understand how you are facing metastatic cancer, your symptoms, and your unmet needs. We welcome your opinions about what supportive care you feel would be most helpful, in addition to your medical care. By taking part in an interview and a survey, you are helping us in developing important interventions and resources for people living with cancer and helping healthcare providers understand how to best support you.

Am I Eligible to Participate?

You are eligible for this study if you are an adult (18 years or older) living in the US, you have been diagnosed with metastatic cancer, and you are of Chinese or Korean or Vietnamese heritage.

What Will I Be Asked to Do?

The study consists of a short screening telephone call to determine your eligibility for the study. If eligible, we will schedule a 10-15 minute call to ask you demographic questions, such as your age and when you were diagnosed. Then, we’ll do a one-on-one phone/Zoom interview lasting about an hour. The interviewer will ask about how you have been facing cancer, and what would be most helpful for people with metastatic cancer. After the interview, we’ll ask you to complete a 30-minute survey. The survey will have questions about how you have been doing, what thoughts you have had, and how your quality of life has been since being diagnosed with metastatic cancer.

Interviews can be conducted in English, Korean, Mandarin/Cantonese, or Vietnamese, at a convenient time via phone or Zoom video call. The survey is also available in English, Korean, Simplified/Traditional Chinese, or Vietnamese.

Will I Be Compensated?

After completion of the survey, you will be compensated for your time with a $90 e-gift card to Target or Amazon as a token of our appreciation.

How Do I Sign Up?

If you are interested in participating or have any questions, please contact (213) 537-9209

For more information, visit: