Racial/Ethnic Differences in Comprehension of Biospecimen Collection: a Nationwide University of Rochester Cancer Center NCI Community Oncology Research Program Study.

Author(s): Asare M,  Heckler CE,  Culakova E,  Kamen CS,  Kleckner AS,  Minasian LM,  Wendler DS,  Feige M,  Weil CJ,  Long J,  Cole SK,  Onitilo AA,  Peppone LJ,  Morrow GR,  Janelsins MC

Journal: J Cancer Educ

Date: 2020 Apr

Major Program(s) or Research Group(s): NCORP, OD

PubMed ID: 30612315

PMC ID: PMC6612536

Abstract: To examine whether (a) non-minority participants differed from racial minority participants in the understanding of biospecimens collected for research purposes, (b) patients differed from comparison group in their understanding of the ways their biospecimens could be used by researchers, and (c) participants received adequate information before consenting to donate blood for research studies. We analyzed cross-sectional data from female breast cancer patients scheduled to receive chemotherapy at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) Community Oncology Research Program (NCORP) clinical sites and a healthy comparison group. After reading a consent form related to biospecimens and consenting to participate in a clinical trial, participants' understanding of biospecimen collection was evaluated. Linear models were used to compare scores between non-minority and racial minority participants as well as cancer and non-cancer comparisons adjusting for possible confounding factors. A total of 650 participants provided evaluable data; 592 were non-minority (Caucasian) and 58 participants were a racial minority (71% Black and 29% other). There were 427 cancer patients and 223 comparisons. Non-minority participants scored higher than racial minorities on relevance-to-care items (diff. = 0.48, CI 0.13-0.80, p = 0.001). Comparison group scored higher than cancer patients on relevance-to-care items (diff. = 0.58, CI 0.37-0.78). A moderate number of the participants exhibited a poor understanding of biospecimen collection across all racial/ethnic backgrounds, but racial minority participants' scores remained lower in the relevance-to-care subscale even after adjusting for education and reading level. Differences were also noted among the patients and comparison group. Researchers should facilitate comprehension of biospecimen collection for all study participants, especially racial minority participants.