Open Access Open Badges Research article

Recruitment strategies and yields for the Pathobiology of Prediabetes in a Biracial Cohort: a prospective natural history study of incident dysglycemia

Sotonte Ebenibo1, Chimaroke Edeoga1, Ann Ammons1, Nonso Egbuonu1, Samuel Dagogo-Jack12* and the Pathobiology of Prediabetes in a Biracial Cohort (POP-ABC) Research Group

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Medicine, Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, University of Tennessee Health Science Center, Memphis, TN, USA

2 University of Tennessee Health Science Center, 920 Madison Avenue, Suite 300A, Memphis, TN 38163, USA

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BMC Medical Research Methodology 2013, 13:64  doi:10.1186/1471-2288-13-64

Published: 10 May 2013



The Pathobiology of Prediabetes in A Biracial Cohort study is a prospective evaluation of the transition from normal to impaired glucose regulation among African American and Caucasian adults with parental type 2 diabetes. This report describes recruitment strategies and relative yields for the 376 enrolled subjects.


Recruitment occurred over 3.4 years, with clinical and metabolic assessments during 2.1-5.5 years of quarterly follow-up. The major recruitment sources were advertisements, community outreach, and clinical facilities. Advertisements included newspaper, television, radio, Internet, distributed brochures, utility bill inserts, and direct mailing. Community outreach included screening events during religious gatherings and health fairs, and referral by friends and families. The category of clinical facilities covered all subjects referred by health workers or recruited through area clinics and hospitals.


57.7% of participants were African American and 42.3% were Caucasian; the mean age (± SD) was 44.2 ± 10.6 years, and ~70% were female. Advertisements yielded 52.4% of all participants, compared to 34.8% from community outreach and 12.8% from clinical facilities (P for trend < 0.0001). More Caucasians than African Americans cited advertising as the source of study information, whereas more African Americans than Caucasians cited community outreach. The accrual from clinical facilities was similar in both groups.


Advertisements and community outreach were robust recruitment sources for assembling a diverse longitudinal diabetes offspring cohort, but each had differential yields in African Americans and Caucasians. Thus, a multifaceted approach comprising passive and active components is needed to recruit a multiracial clinical research population.

African American; Advertising; Community outreach; Racial differences; Longitudinal retention