Prevalence of Targetable Mutations in Black Patients With Lung Cancer: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

Philippos A. Costa, Eduardo E. Saul, Yonette Paul, Sunil Iyer, Laercio Lopes da Silva, Leonardo Tamariz, Gilberto Lopes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


PURPOSE: Inferior outcomes of Black patients with lung cancer compared with other racial groups are often linked to socioeconomic factors. It is crucial to determine whether a varying prevalence of targetable mutations limits treatments and contributes to disparities. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We conducted a meta-analysis on the prevalence of lung cancer EGFR, ALK, ROS-1, and BRAF mutations in Black patients compared with White, Hispanic, and Asian patients. We searched PubMed/MEDLINE, Cochrane Library, EMBASE, CENTRAL, Google Scholar, and databases. We selected studies reporting the prevalence of at least one mutation in the Black population. We calculated the pooled prevalence of mutations using fixed effects, exact binomial distributions, and Freeman-Turkey double arcsine transformation to stabilize the variances. RESULTS: Twenty studies with 11,867 patients were included. In Black patients, EGFR was the most prevalent mutation (6%; 95% CI, 5 to 7), followed by BRAF (1%; 95% CI, 0 to 2), ALK (1%; 95% CI, 0 to 2), and ROS-1 (0%; 95% CI, 0 to 1). Black patients had a lower prevalence of EGFR mutations than White, Hispanic, and Asian patients (P < .01). BRAF mutations were less prevalent in Black compared with White patients (P < .05), and ALK mutations were less prevalent when compared with Hispanic patients (P < .05). CONCLUSION: EGFR is the most frequent mutation found in Black patients, although its prevalence is lower than that in other races. Black patients have a low overall prevalence of ALK, ROS-1, and BRAF mutations. Given that disproportional eligibility for targeted therapies may be contributing to inferior outcomes, research focused on the Black population is needed to evaluate specific tumor characteristics and therapeutic strategies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e629-e636
JournalJCO Oncology Practice
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Health Policy
  • Oncology(nursing)


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