Missing diversity in brain tumor trials.

TitleMissing diversity in brain tumor trials.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2020
AuthorsTaha B, Winston G, Tosi U, Hartley B, Hoffman C, Dahmane N, Mason CE, Greenfield JP
JournalNeurooncol Adv
Date Published2020 Jan-Dec

Background: Clinical trials for brain tumors represent a significant opportunity for both patients and providers to understand and combat a disease with substantial morbidity. The aim of this study was to quantify and map ethnic and racial representation in brain tumor trials and examine the potential gaps in trial recruitment. We also show that these representation gaps persist even in large multicultural cities like New York City.

Methods: We analyzed brain tumor clinical trials registered on www.clinicaltrials.gov between July 1, 2005 and completed on or before November 11, 2017. We used a combination of PubMed/MEDLINE and Google Scholar to find associated publications and obtained trial information as well as patient demographic information (when available) including race or ancestry.

Results: Out of 471 trials, 27% had no published results. Only 28.4% of trials with results reported race or ethnicity of trial participants, with no observed upward trend by year. Whites were significantly overrepresented in trials for metastatic brain tumors ( < .001) and high-grade trials ( < .001). Blacks/African Americans (AAs), Hispanics, and Asians were significantly underrepresented ( < .001) in high-grade trials, while only Blacks/AAs were underrepresented in trials for metastatic brain tumors ( < .001). Representation gaps were not observed in pediatric trials. Despite being a multicultural hub, New York City displayed similar gaps in trial representation.

Conclusions: Despite increasing representation in the American population, minorities are underrepresented in brain tumor trials. In addition, despite numerous legal requirements and ethical mandates, published results including race-based information are remarkably absent from 70% of brain tumor trials.

Alternate JournalNeurooncol Adv
PubMed ID32642711
PubMed Central IDPMC7316223