[Paleopsych] CHE: NIH Continues to Place a Low Priority on Research on Gender Differences
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Thu May 12 00:38:50 UTC 2005
NIH Continues to Place a Low Priority on Research on Gender Differences,
Health-Advocacy Group Says
News bulletin from the Chronicle of Higher Education, 5.5.11
By SILLA BRUSH
Research on the biological and health differences between men and
women remains a low priority at the National Institutes of Health,
according to a report released on Tuesday by the Society for Women's
Health Research, despite what the society says is increasing evidence
of the importance of such research.
The society, a Washington-based advocacy organization, says research
on sexual differences is necessary in all types of biological studies.
But from 2000 to 2003, only about 3 percent of all grants awarded by
the NIH went to projects on the differences between men and women,
according to the report, although there was nearly a 20-percent
increase in the total number of NIH grants.
"Given the growing body of literature on sex differences, external
reports about NIH practices, and the NIH's internal efforts to promote
this research, we had hoped to see higher and increasing levels of
funding for this important area of research," Sherry A. Marts, the
society's vice president for scientific affairs and an author of the
report, said in a written statement.
Donald M. Ralbovsky, a spokesman for the NIH, said the agency was
reviewing the report. He declined to comment further.
The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism awarded 8
percent of its grants to such research, the highest level of any NIH
center, according to the report. The centers that have the most money
and support the most grants each year, such as the National Cancer
Institute and the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, however,
ranked low in their support for studies on sexual and gender
differences. From 2000 to 2003, the centers that financed the highest
percentage of studies on sexual differences also cut back on their
To increase the level of support, the society recommends updating NIH
guidelines to promote that type of research and issuing an NIH-wide
public announcement inviting applications for the research.
The full text of the report, "National Institutes of Health:
Intramural and Extramural Support for Research on Sex Differences,
2000-2003," is available on the center's Web site.
Background articles from The Chronicle:
* Study Challenges View That Clinical Trials Have Focused on Men
* More Research Needed on Women, Study Finds (5/19/2000)
* Studies of Women's Health Produce a Wealth of Knowledge on the
Biology of Gender Differences (6/25/1999)
53. mailto:silla.brush at chronicle.com
E-mail me if you have problems getting the referenced articles.
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