Precision Medicine Initiative funding, advisory panel unveiled

President Barack Obama's Precision Medicine Initiative is moving forward, with a recent announcement of initial funding opportunities, as well as creation of a panel of outside advisers.

This is part of a PMI Cohort Program, which will build a research cohort of 1 million or more Americans who will share their data in an effort to extend precision medicine to more diseases.

The funding will be awarded to projects that can be used as a national resources. They will include research programs, a biobank and a program coordination center, among other initiatives, according to an announcement from Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health.

In addition, members of the new PMI Cohort Program Advisory panel have been named. Some of them include:

  • Alta Charo, J.D., the Warren P. Knowles professor of Law and Bioethics at the University of Wisconsin Law and School of Medicine & Public Health
  • Sachin Kheterpal, M.D., associate professor of the Department of Anesthesiology, at University of Michigan Medical School
  • Eric Dishman, Intel fellow and general manager of Health & Life Sciences at Intel Corporation

The advisers will "provide ongoing guidance and oversight of the cohort, while contributing significantly to the evolution of the program's vision, scientific and clinical goals, and operations," Collins says.

NIH is awaiting congressional appropriations; once those are set, it can start to build the infrastructure for the study so the cohort can start next year.

Last week, the White House released a set of privacy principles to govern the PMI. The administration worked with experts to craft the principles after analyzing bioethics literature and privacy policies for large biobanks and research cohorts as well as taking into account more than 100 comments on their draft suggestions.

To learn more:
- here's the announcement
- check funding opportunity details

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