Science policy news: weekly roundup: September 18, 2015 ?>

Science policy news: weekly roundup: September 18, 2015

The roundup is formatted with the title of the story, followed by the news source in parentheses and a brief summary. If you find a particularly interesting article, please send it to for inclusion in next week’s roundup.


The Director of the U.S. National Institute of Mental Health will step down to join the life-sciences division of Google, Alphabet.

Director of US mental-health institute leaves for Google (Nature)

Google hires top government brain scientist to probe mental illness (Fierce Medical Devices)

Google’s healthcare ambitions keep growing with Insel hiring (PharmaPhorum)


The gender gap persists in academic ranks in medical schools and in start-up packages for junior medical researchers.

Another Research Gender Gap: Men Get More Start-Up Money (The Chronicle of Higher Education)

The gender gap is especially severe in biotech lab funding (BioPharmaDive)

Gender Disparities Persist in Academic Medicine (MedBroadcast)

Sex Differences in Academic Rank in US Medical Schools in 2014 (JAMA)

Sex Differences in Institutional Support for Junior Biomedical Researchers (JAMA)


Fetal-tissue research offers the potential for tremendous biomedical advances despite recent negative attention.

Proposed fetal tissue ban raises alarm for Wisconsin researchers (Science Insider)

UW chancellor: Fetal tissue bill greater threat than budget cuts (Milwaukee Wisconsin Journal Sentinel & Duluth News Tribune)

UW regents, chancellor break silence, urge lawmakers to halt fetal tissue legislation (The Chippewa Herald)

State’s largest business lobby opposes fetal tissue bill (Milwaukee Wisconsin Journal Sentinel)

Planned Parenthood not the only healthcare program at risk for losing funding (Healthcare Finance)


NIH disclosure rules falter (Nature) Strict rules, which require conflict of interest reporting to the National Institutes of Health, induce significant financial burden on universities but may not identify questionable conflicts of interest.


The Precision Medicine Initiative could leverage the power of advanced genomic sequencing, a one-million patient cohort and methods for managing and analyzing large data to accelerate biomedical discovery, but will it?

Unpatients—why patients should own their medical data (Nature Biotechnology)

Precision medicine: Hype over hope? (Science Blogs)

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