Navigation Links
Women under-represented in cancer research, U-M study finds

ANN ARBOR, Mich. Women are under-represented in clinical cancer research published in high-impact journals, according to a new study by researchers at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Taking into account the incidence of particular types of cancer among women, studies included a smaller proportion of women than should be expected. The analysis looked specifically at studies of cancer types that were not gender specific, including colon cancer, oral cancers, lung cancer, brain tumors and lymphomas.

The authors looked at 661 prospective clinical studies with more than 1 million total participants. Results of this study appear online in the journal Cancer and will be published in the July 15 print issue.

"In the vast majority of individual studies we analyzed, fewer women were enrolled than we would expect given the proportion of women diagnosed with the type of cancer being studied. We're seeing it across the board in all cancer types," says study author Reshma Jagsi, M.D., D.Phil., assistant professor of radiation oncology at the U-M Medical School.

"It's so important that women are appropriately represented in research. We know there are biological differences between the sexes, as well as social and cultural differences. Studies need to be able to assess whether there are differences in responses to treatment, for example, between women and men," she adds.

The National Institutes of Health's Revitalization Act of 1993 explicitly calls out the importance of including women in clinical research, noting that clinical trials should enroll adequate numbers of women to allow for subgroup analysis.

The U-M researchers found that studies reporting government funding did include higher numbers of women participants, but the impact was modest 41 percent, compared to 37 percent for studies not receiving government funding.

Traditionally, researchers were told not to include people of vulnerable populations in their studies. This group included women of childbearing age. "By protecting them from research, we're excluding them," Jagsi notes.

Previous studies have found some barriers to clinical trial participation are lack of information, fear and a perception of interfering with personal responsibilities, such as child care.

"Sometimes participating in research studies can be time intensive. Women today are often stretched very thin trying to deal with the balance between domestic responsibilities, their cancer diagnosis, and often a career as well. They may be particularly likely to find clinical trials too burdensome. In that case, researchers should consider providing compensation to help with transportation or child care expenses," Jagsi says.

This under-representation of women is not necessarily the result of conscious decisions, points out senior author Peter Ubel, M.D., director of the Center for Behavioral and Decision Sciences in Medicine at U-M.

"Clinical researchers are not purposely trying to exclude women from their studies. All the more reason they need to consciously and earnestly revise their recruitment methods to give more women a chance to volunteer," Ubel says.


Contact: Nicole Fawcett
University of Michigan Health System

Related medicine news :

1. Women under-represented in most cancer research
2. Middle-aged women experience more stress but have lower blood pressure
3. Grilled Meats Not Tied to Breast Cancer in Older Women
4. MassMutual Survey: Female Cancer Survivors Better Prepared Financially Than Other Women For Lifes Unexpected Events
5. One Woman Initiative Announces First Grants to Womens Organizations in Five Nations
6. Women may not be so picky after all about choosing a mate
7. Study: Benefit to women not enough to sway men to get HPV vaccine
8. Experts reach consensus on diagnosis and treatment of bleeding disorders in women
9. AARP to Support the Love/Avon Army of Women
10. Garden of Life Partners with WomenHeart to Help Combat Womens Heart Disease
11. Go Red For Women(R) Launches 12-Week Program to Improve Heart Health and Save Lives
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... Intellitec Solutions ... SL User Group (MSDSLUG). Recognized as Microsoft’s official group for end users of ... SL software users, partners, industry experts and representatives. Intellitec Solutions’ membership status demonstrates ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... The men and women ... healthcare organizations in the country. They have overseen financial turnarounds, shown commitment to ... the healthcare industry as a whole through their advocacy and professional efforts. , ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... ... November 26, 2015 , ... Inevitably when people think Thanksgiving, ... choose to buy during the Black Friday and Cyber Monday massage chair sales ... search the Internet high and low to find the best massage chair deals, they ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 26, 2015 , ... PRMA Plastic ... November 19, 2015, our surgeons performed their 6,000th free flap breast reconstruction surgery! , ... wake up every day excited to rebuild lives and it’s an honor to have ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... OAK BROOK, Ill. (PRWEB) , ... November 25, ... ... sometimes larger and potentially more aggressive than those found on mammography, according to ... cases MRI findings of additional cancers not seen on mammography may necessitate a ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/26/2015)... , November 26, 2015 ... addition of the "2016 Future Horizons ... of Abuse Testing Market: Supplier Shares, Country ... report to their offering. --> ... the "2016 Future Horizons and Growth ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... DUBLIN , November 26, 2015 ... has announced the addition of the  ... in the European Therapeutic Drug Monitoring ... Forecasts, Competitive Intelligence, Emerging Opportunities"  report ... ) has announced the addition ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... 2015 ... the  "2016 Future Horizons and Growth ... Marker Testing Market: Supplier Shares, Competitive ... offering.  --> ) ... "2016 Future Horizons and Growth Strategies ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: