Historically, African-American children have been absent from clinical trials. A new University of Pittsburgh survey found that the reason could be that black parents are more likely than their white counterparts to question medical research.

Compared to Caucasians, black parents were more likely to report distrust of medical research (67 percent vs. 50 percent) and less likely to enroll their children in clinical research. The study also found that the more education the parents had, the less likely they were to be skeptical; however black parents were still two times more likely to be suspicious.

Researchers attributed the “distrust to both a cultural memory of victimization and exploitation during clinical experiments, such as in the Tuskegee Syphilis Study, and to personal experiences with discrimination.”

Moving forward, experts plan to build trust among blacks by using appropriate recruitment materials, hiring research assistants with similar racial and cultural backgrounds and establishing community research advisory boards.