News & CommentRESEARCH ETHICS

NIH Examines Standards for Consent

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Science  12 Jun 1998:
Vol. 280, Issue 5370, pp. 1688
DOI: 10.1126/science.280.5370.1688

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Summary

The safeguards meant to protect human subjects in U.S. biomedical research could get tighter as a result of several inquiries into the quality of oversight provided by independent review boards that must approve and monitor human experiments funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and other federal agencies. A series of well-publicized complaints from patients' families over the past 2 years has brought the issue to a head. Last week, NIH released a flurry of new findings and recommendations on the subject, including the announcement of 14 new research projects on informed consent and $3 million worth of extramural bioethics training programs.