National Institutes of Health Bioethics Interest Group
Bioethics Interest Group

Advances in biomedical research create challenging bioethical dilemmas.  Within and beyond the scientific community, there is a range of ethical questions being debated.  For example: What are the best means to safeguard confidential information generated during genetic screening?  Should persons of limited mental capacity be involved in research that will not provide direct benefit to them?  What is appropriate compensation for research participation?  What role should the NIH play in supporting embryonic stem cell research?

These questions and others highlight complex ethical issues that are difficult to answer.  As a result, NIH has developed several sources of information to help researchers, participants in research studies, and the general public to think through ethical issues and problems.

The Bioethics Interest Group meets monthly, usually on the first Monday of each month from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. in the conference rooms on the lower level of the Natcher Building (Bldg. 45).  Please join the Bioethics listserv to receive meeting notices and other news.

Meeting formats vary, with seminars, focused discussion, or a debate. Each meeting features time for exchange of ideas and a Program Brief in which we share information about a specific program at NIH, e.g. short-term training in bioethics, Clinical Center programs, or grant initiatives in ethics of research. Members' interests are wide-ranging and include:

* Issues concerning human subjects (trial design, participation of children, cognitively impaired and demented people, and other defined groups as subjects; privacy and confidentiality)
* Reproductive issues
* Issues in genetics research (stored samples, genetics of behavior, discrimination in health/life insurance/genetic information, consent, testing/screening for single-gene disease, genetic diversity)
* IRB issues Consent issues, including advance directives for research
* End-of-life issues
* Research in managed care organizations
* Scientific integrity, community standards, and misconduct

The Bioethics Interest Group coordinator is
Miriam Kelty

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.  This front page was last update on April 23, 2009.

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