Disparities in cancer trial enrollment between Black and White patients are not driven by differences in eligibility, according to study results published in JCO Oncology Practice.

Researchers found that Black and White patients with breast or ovarian cancer were similarly likely to be eligible for cancer trials and to be offered enrollment. However, Black patients were less likely than White patients to show interest in trials and to enroll in them.

The researchers performed a retrospective cohort study using data from 512 patients who received oncology care for breast or ovarian cancers between January 2017 and February 2020 at a single center. All patients were women, the median age was 59 years, 72.8% were White, 70.1% had breast cancer, and 18.9% lived in more disadvantaged neighborhoods.

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Patient characteristics were compared with eligibility criteria of current open trials to evaluate the relationship between trial enrollment and underrepresented populations.

Overall, 65.4% of patients were eligible for a clinical trial, 19.3% showed interest in participating, 50.2% were offered to enroll, and 31.1% decided to enroll.

Compared with White patients, Black patients were less likely to show interest in participating in a trial (odds ratio [OR], 0.40; 95% CI, 0.18-0.90) and less likely to enroll (OR, 0.56; 95% CI, 0.32-0.98). However, the 2 groups were similarly likely to be eligible for trials (OR, 0.86; 95% CI, 0.53-1.37) and to be offered the opportunity to participate (OR, 0.61; 95% CI, 0.34-1.10).

Patients in more disadvantaged neighborhoods were less likely to enroll in a trial (OR, 0.46; 95% CI, 0.24-0.89) and more likely to decline enrollment (OR, 3.40; 95% CI, 1.44-8.00). However, the 2 groups were similarly likely to be eligible for a trial (OR, 0.92; 95% CI, 0.55-1.55), to be interested in participating (OR, 0.96; 95% CI, 0.36-2.40), and to be offered enrollment (OR, 0.89; 95% CI, 0.46-1.72).

These data suggest that ineligibility is not responsible for disparities among Black and White patients or according to neighborhood disadvantage in breast and ovarian cancer trials, researchers concluded.

Disclosures: Some study authors declared affiliations with biotech, industry. Please refer to the original article for a full list of disclosures.


Caston NE, Lalor F, Wall J, et al. Ineligible, unaware, or uninterested? Associations between underrepresented patient populations and retention in the pathway to cancer clinical trial enrollment. JCO Oncol Pract. Published online September 30, 2022. doi:10.1200/OP.22.00359

This article originally appeared on Oncology Nurse Advisor