Orphanet Journal of Rare Diseases
Quantitative analysis of a rare disease network’s international contact database and E-repository provides insights into biobanking in the electronic consent era
Orphanet Journal of Rare Diseases201914:173
© The Author(s). 2019
- Published: 11 July 2019
Castleman disease (CD) describes a group of rare and poorly understood lymphoproliferative disorders that include unicentric CD (UCD), Human Herpes Virus-8 (HHV8)-associated multicentric CD (HHV8 + MCD), and HHV8-negative/idiopathic MCD (iMCD). Efforts to advance research and drug discovery for CD have been slowed by challenges shared by other rare diseases, such as collecting and centralizing data and biospecimens for research. To collect disease characteristic data and identify individuals interested in contributing biospecimens for research, a global research organization - the Castleman Disease Collaborative Network (CDCN) - established an international Contact Database and electronic repository (E-repository). Herein, we performed analyses of these datasets to further characterize CD and gain insights into research biospecimen acquisition.
Descriptive statistical analyses were performed on 891 participants from the Contact Database and 166 patients in the E-repository. The median age of patients at the time of enrollment in the Contact Database and E-repository was 42 ± 15.7 and 35 ± 14.8, respectively. The E-repository had increased representation from patients with MCD and the iMCD subtype compared to other sub-groups. Though the majority of participants were from the USA, a total of 49 countries on 6 continents were represented. Several patient characteristics in the Contact Database were associated with subsequent enrollment in the E-repository. There were significantly more MCD patients (p < 0.0001) and females (p = 0.002) enrolled in the E-repository compared to the Contact Database. Patient’s year of birth, date of registration, preferred method of communication, and relationship to the patient were also significantly associated with enrollment in the e-Repository.
This study of the largest- dataset of CD patients worldwide provides insights into disease phenotypes, characteristics of patients interested in contributing data and biospecimens for research, and methods for successfully acquiring data and biospecimens. Generally, the factors associated with enrollment in the E-repository represented severity of disease subtype, proximity to the research, and patient motivation. We hope that these findings and the sample documentation (e.g., electronic consent, recruitment materials) provided with this article will assist future rare disease efforts with overcoming hurdles.
- Castleman disease
- Electronic consent
- Contact database
- Electronic repository
- Enrollment strategy