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It is essential that the lack of racial and ethnic diversity in prostate cancer clinical trials be addressed to improve health disparities in racial/ethnic minority populations. This study suggests that population-based cancer registries could be used as a source for recruiting minority patients to overcome problems with diversity and inclusion in clinical trial research.

In January of 2019, the Assembly Bill (AB2325) went into effect in California. This bill mandated the electronic reporting of structured data elements to the California Cancer Registry (CCR) from pathologists diagnosing cancer in patients. Using information electronically gathered from the CCR, the investigators employed RCA or “rapid case ascertainment” to screen through pathology reports from patients diagnosed with cancer.

The research group’s goal was to demonstrate that leveraging structured electronic pathology or e-path data reporting to a population-based cancer registry to recruit men with high-risk prostate cancer to clinical research would prove feasible and acceptable.

This nonrandomized study included patients with a new pathologic diagnosis of high-risk prostate cancer. It tested the effectiveness of an online clinical trial matching tool called Trial Library, an internet-based clinical trial matching website used in combination with e-path to improve the matching of underrepresented patients with prostate cancer to clinical trials at the time of diagnosis.

The researchers successfully demonstrated that e-path could be linked with an online clinical trial matching tool such as Trial Library. They advocate that future studies prioritize recruitment from reporting facilities that serve more racially/ethnically diverse patient populations to bring about improvements in cancer clinical trial disparities [1].

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[1] Borno, H. T., Duffy, C., Zhang, S., Canchola, A. J., Loya, Z., Golden, T., Oh, D. L., Odisho, A. Y., & Gomez, S. (2021). Integration of electronic pathology reporting with clinical trial matching for advanced prostate cancer. Urologic Oncology: Seminars and Original Investigations. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.urolonc.2020.12.010