This post is part of our SWOG Stories series, a collection of diverse perspectives from doctors, recruiters, members, patient advocates, and others across the Group. You can listen to all of these wonderful conversations here.


“We built an incredible network of connections.”

– Karen Anderson

Karen Anderson, former leader of Recruitment and Retention at the group’s statistical center, sat down with longtime collaborator and SWOG Cancer Research Network Patient Advocate Sandra Hamilton to discuss their shared history.

In the featured segment, Sandra and Karen describe the unique challenges of recruiting minority participants for clinical trials and how they’ve creatively addressed those challenges through advocacy.

SELECT was a landmark trial — the largest U.S. cancer prevention trial ever launched. This Phase III study of selenium, vitamin E, selenium and vitamin E together, or placebo was designed to assess the effect of these supplements on the incidence of prostate cancer. Funded by the National Cancer Institute and conducted by SWOG, the study opened in August 2001 and quickly exceeded its accrual goal of 35,533 men. One in four participants was a minority.

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