Posted on the IRB Forum
March 1, 2009

To our colleagues in bioethics:

We need your help. We need you to write letters, and we need it fast.

Here at the University of Tennessee medical school, the Dean has informed us that he intends to eliminate our entire department. Last summer he informed our chair, Dr. Terry Ackerman, that he wanted to do this, and now the machinery to effect his plan is in motion.

Earlier today the UT Board of Trustees approved a revised policy for "discontinuing academic units," thereby activating the process in earnest.

A final decision about us will ultimately require the approval of the Chancellor [...] Read more


Even though this hearing will take place in Washington, D.C., there's also a webcam option so anyone who is interested can "attend."

Energy and Commerce Subcommittee Hearing on “Institutional Review Boards that Oversee Experimental Human Testing for Profit”

The Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations will hold a hearing titled, “Institutional Review Boards that Oversee Experimental Human Testing for Profit” at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, March 26, 2009, in 2123 Rayburn House Office Building in Washington, D.C. The hearing will examine whether institutional review boards (IRBs) and the federal government are adequately protecting human subjects of biomedical research.

Witness List

  • Gregory Kutz, Managing Director, Forensic Audits and [...] Read more


We’re almost there…

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..and it's almost here!
Of course, I'm talking about the 2009 IACUC Conference, which is set to kick off in just four days at the Town and Country Resort & Convention Center in San Diego, CA. Some PRIM&R staff members head to San Diego today to finalize the [...] Read more


Join the conversation!

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Recently, we invited people to contribute to the program development for the 2009 Advancing Ethical Research Conference. We recognize that feedback from the community is invaluable when it comes to gathering and fleshing out ideas, so we gave the option of posting ideas to the conference discussion forum.

Some fantastic ideas have been posted there, including:

  • Creating shorter consent forms with language appropriate for understanding by all educational levels and cultural backgrounds;

  • Cross-cultural differences in one's understanding of RCR issues;

  • Setting up committee reviews for stem cell research;

  • Nanotechnology and Medicine: Issues for [...] Read more


Current Events

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  • March 10 – Newsweek published a web-exclusive article about how social-networking sites created for physicians are becoming a benefit for drug manufacturers and investors.
  • March 12 – The New York Times reported on the undercover, apparent Congressional ‘sting,’ operation at Coast IRB related to a fraudulent medical device protocol sent from review. (Read the initial press release from Coast IRB here.)
  • March 12 – In Boston.com’s White [...] Read more


By Andrew Olmstead, director, member services and development, IRBNet

IRBNet, a frequent exhibitor at PRIM&R’s conferences, recently talked with Dr. Greg Koski about his views on critical issues IRBs face today. We have excerpted the beginning of their discussion here, but you can read the complete version by downloading the PDF at the bottom of the post. Please note that the inclusion of this article should not be construed as PRIM&R's endorsement of IRBNet or IRBNet's product.<[...] Read more