Kevin Cassel, DrPH

Kevin Cassel, DrPH

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Full Member, Population Sciences in the Pacific Program (Cancer Prevention in the Pacific), University of Hawaiʻi Cancer Center

Academic Appointment(s):
Assistant Researcher (Assistant Professor), University of Hawaiʻi Cancer Center, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa

DrPH, Community-based Translational Research, University of Hawai'i at Manoa, Department of Public Health, Honolulu, HI
MPH, Epidemiology, University of Hawai'i at Manoa, Department of Public Health, Honolulu, HI

Research Focus

Over the past decade cancer incidence and mortality rates have declined in the US, however cancer-related health disparities by race/ethnicity, socioeconomic status and geographic location still exist. Dr. Cassel's research explores ways to implement effective cancer control interventions by working with communities experiencing cancer health disparities. Dr. Cassel uses community-based participatory research methods to:

  1. Develop and test ways to improve clinical trials participation.
  2. Adapt and test cancer prevention and control interventions in medically underserved communities.
  3. Engage with young people to adapt and test cancer prevention interventions.

This line of research may have a substantial impact on reducing cancer health disparities and the overall burden of cancer in Hawaiʻi and the U. S. Associated Pacific Island jurisdictions.

Selected Publications

Lee HR, Lee HE, Cassel K, Hagiwara MI, Somera LP. (2019). Protective Effect of Biculturalism for Health Amongst Minority Youth: The Case of Pacific Islander Migrant Youths in Hawaiʻi. Br J Soc Work; Jun;49(4):1003-1022. doi: 10.1093/bjsw/bcz042. Epub 2019 Apr 25. PMID: 31308577 [PubMed].

Cassel KD, Tran DA, Murakami-Akatsuka L, Tanabe-Hanzawa J, Burnett T, Lum C. (2018). Adapting a Skin Cancer Prevention Intervention for Multiethnic Adolescents. Am J Health Behav; Mar 1;42(2):36-49. doi: 10.5993/AJHB.42.2.4. PMID: 29458513 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE].

Pokhrel P, Fagan P, Cassel K, Trinidad DR, Kaholokula JK, Herzog TA. (2016). Social Network Characteristics, Social Support, and Cigarette Smoking among Asian/Pacific Islander Young Adults; Jun;57(3-4):353-65. doi: 10.1002/ajcp.12063.PMID: 27297612 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE] Free PMC Article.

Somera LP, Lee HR, Badowski G, Cassel K. (2016). Health Information Seeking, Source Trust, and Culture: A Comparative Analysis of Health Information Trends and Needs Between Guam and the United States. J Health Commun, 21(4):469-78. doi: 10.1080/10810730.2015.1095822. Epub 2016 Mar 16. PMID: 26983674 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE] Free PMC Article.

Ka'opua LS, Cassel K, Shiramizu B, Stotzer RL, Robles A, Kapua C, Orton M, Milne C, Sesepasara M. (2016). Addressing Risk and Reluctance at the Nexus of HIV and Anal Cancer Screening. Health Promot Pract, Jan;17(1):21-30. doi: 10.1177/1524839915615611. Epub 2015 Dec 2. PMID: 26630979 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE] Free PMC Article.

Publication list via PubMed

Active Grants

K. Cassel, Co-Investigator; V. Tofaeono, PI
NIMHD - U24 MD011202-01
"American Samoa Indigenous Samoan Partnership to Initiate REsearch Excellence (INSPIRE) in Colorectal Cancer Health Literacy"

K. Cassel, Co-Investigator; N. Palafox, C. Vogel, MPIs
NCI-U54 CA143727-07
"University of Guam/University of Hawaii Cancer Center Partnership"

K. Cassel, Co-Investigator; B. Shiramizu, PI
"Informing Anal Neoplasia Differences/Similarities In HIV-Serodiscordant Individuals"
This project will explore a biomarker dyad (hr-HPV, p16) in anal cytologies, to attest if anal HIV DNA discriminates squamous cell carcinoma (SCC), high-grade- or low-grade squamous intraepithelial lesions (HSIL, LSIL). Anal neoplastic cells will be compared for Raman spectra differences or similarities to assess cellular microenvironments.
June 2017 - May 2019