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'Rebels' Game Battles Tobacco Use
Researchers Link Science and Business

Students at one high school in Maine have become rebels in the battle for a tobacco-free future. In actuality, they are participants in an interactive multimedia game focused on smoking prevention and smoking cessation. The game, "Rebels: The Battle for a Tobacco-Free Future," takes place in 2080 in a fictional society where children as young as five are forced to use tobacco. When advertising materials drew the Maine students' attention to "Rebels," they asked their teachers about buying the program. Told the school didn't have the money, the students hosted carwashes and other activities to cover the cost. Faculty members were duly impressed and the award-winning game is now a staple at the school.

Shown above are three screens from "Rebels: The Battle for a Tobacco-Free Future," a first of its kind interactive multimedia game designed for middle- and high-school students. The game explains the risks and hazards of tobacco.

Inflexxion, a Newton, Mass.-based company, produced "Rebels." Inflexxion is one of many small businesses developing products under the auspices of the National Cancer Institute's Multimedia Technology/Health Communication Small Business Innovation Research Grant Program, Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences. The program's major objective is the use of media technologies for translation of cancer research into practical and appropriate applications for both health care professionals and the public.

Researchers' commercially viable products are showcased in "Linking Science and Business." This event, first held in October 2000, archived at http://videocast.nih.gov, enables the grantees to demonstrate their products and present the objectives and evaluation results of their work.

"Linking Science and Business II" will be held at the Lister Hill Center Auditorium, Sept. 6-7, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sessions on Thursday will cover products related to screening, behavior modification, and quality of life; Friday's sessions are products related to specific populations and smoking interventions. The event is open to the NIH community.

For further information contact Connie Dresser, program director, 435-2846, or Dianne Needham, technology showcase coordinator, 594-6811.


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