Science policy news: weekly roundup: November 6, 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 smartin@asbmb.org for inclusion in next week’s roundup.

The National Institutes of Health has called for a moratorium on funding for human-animal stem-cell chimera research. In response, scientists and a bioethicist from the Stanford University School of Medicine have written an open letter urging the NIH to lift those restrictions.

Should Human Stem Cells Be Used To Make Partly Human Chimeras? (NPR)

US Scientists Demand Removal of Restrictions on Animal Chimera Research (Gizmodo)

Researchers urge lifting of NIH funding restrictions on chimeric research (Stanford Medicine News Center)

Stanford researchers urge lifting of NIH funding restrictions on chimeric research (Phys.org)

Human-animal chimeras: Stanford scientists condemn funding ban (San Jose Mercury News)

 

NSF Funds Big Data Brain Trust (Campus Technology) The National Science Foundation is establishing 4 regional hubs for advancement of big data science. The Midwest Hub will focus on health care and biomedical research as well as issues like smart cities and digital agriculture.

 

In response to a new policy from the NIH requiring the use of both males and females in pre-clinical research, authors of an opinion piece in the Proceedings of the National Academies of Science argue that inclusion of both sexes is inadequate and careful study of “interaction of sex and gender variables in health outcomes and human populations” is warranted.

Opinion: Focus on preclinical sex differences will not address women’s and men’s health disparities (PNAS)

Does NIH do enough to include women in clinical research? (The Pump Handle)

 

Feature: A controversial company offers a new way to make a baby (Science) Based in Waltham, MA, OvaScience offers a fertility treatment called AUGMENT to women who have been unsuccessful with in vitro fertilization. OvaScience extracts egg precursor cells from the patient’s ovary and claims to enhance their viability by injecting maternal mitochondria at time of fertilization.

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