New 18-part video program focuses on gender as a biological variable in preclinical research to fill knowledge gaps in scientific investigation and accuracy
NEW YORK, June 20, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Cohen Veterans Bioscience (CVB) is proud to present an unprecedented new video series that provides the practical knowledge researchers need to include sex as a biological variable in their current and future research. The 18-part video training program, titled “Addressing Gender as a Biological Variable in Preclinical Pharmacology and Neuroscience Research: Accounting for Overlooked Factors and Applying Practical Solutions to Increase Rigor and Reproducibility,” is designed to facilitate transfer of insights from basic research to strengthen human care.
Developed under the direction of Dr. Chantelle Ferland Beckham, PhD, senior director of external affairs and director of educational programs for the CVB, the video series was created in response to a 2015 National Institutes of Health (NIH) guideline aimed at improving the design, analysis, and reporting of research in the preclinical setting To change ensure that both male and female organisms are included in early-stage animal testing. A similar policy was issued nearly 20 years earlier (1993) mandating the inclusion of women in human studies. Prior to 2015, most biomedical research was done exclusively on male animals. As a result, women have historically been underrepresented in preclinical research studies.
“Male-only research translates poorly into female human populations,” said Dr. Ferland-Beckham. “This is of particular concern in the field of neuroscience, where there are many well-established differences in basic biology between men and women. Brain disease research often reveals gender differences in prevalence, progression, and response to treatment, and because women are similar and different in biological systems, we’re advancing the discovery of health solutions that are best suited for the entire population,” added Dr. Ferland-Beckham.
For many researchers, navigating the new policy created confusion and discovered a knowledge gap that prevented them from fully adopting the policy. This new video series aims to fill that knowledge gap. In the 18 videos, researchers can review what is known about gender differences in the fields of neuroscience and pharmacology and learn why research that includes both sexes is important to advance patient-centered treatments and drive innovation, unlocking new areas of potential discovery.
RD Magali HaasMD, PhD, CEO of CVB, noted: “Historically, women have not been part of the equation when it comes to important health discoveries that have shaped clinical care. The assumption that women and men were fundamentally similar beyond the reproductive system left large gaps in our understanding of gender-sensitive healthcare. By including biological sex in the design, analysis and reporting of all research studies, we ensure that we are not making decisions for 100% of the population based on half the data.”
The videos are now available on the website of the Global Preclinical Data Forum (https://www.preclinicaldataforum.org/addressing-sex-as-a-biological-variable-training/), a joint global initiative of the CVB and the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology to address modern issues in preclinical science that contribute to poor research quality and impede progress in clinical care. Many of the activities at the Global Pre-Clinical Data Forum focus on training early-stage researchers on how to ensure that the science they conduct meets rigorous standards of experimental design, methodology, analysis, interpretation, and reporting.
Dr Ferland-Beckham added: “When we are confident that the research on which we base our knowledge is being conducted in a way that allows others to reliably reproduce and expand on the results, our ability to advance scientific discovery and maximize effort increases. ”. CVB believes that educating the next generation of research associates on these principles is key to improving the success rate of clinical research and development. We are proud to add this training series on sex as a biological variable to our resource toolbox that will allow us to further improve the fundamental raw material for all brain health research.”
The creation of these educational videos was supported by a generous donation from the National Institute of General Medicines (concession number: 5 R25 GM133017-03), awarded to Cohen Veterans Bioscience (Principal Investigator: Chantelle Ferland BeckhamPhD) and through direct input from an Advisory Board of internationally recognized experts in the areas of gender differences, neuropharmacology, and research design and analysis.
About Cohen Veterans Bioscience
Cohen Veterans Bioscience (CVB) is a non-profit 501(c)(3) biomedical research organization dedicated to accelerating the development of diagnostic tests and personalized therapies for millions of veterans and civilians suffering the ravages of trauma and other brain disorders. . The CVB promotes research best practices for evidence-based, reproducible and effective solutions. To support our research efforts and learn more, visit www.cohenveteransbioscience.org.
SOURCE Cohen Veterans Bioscience