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Freedom of Information Act Office

IC Directors' Meeting Highlights

March 18, 2003

To: IC Directors
From: Acting Director, Executive Secretariat
Subject: IC Directors Meeting Highlights—February 27, 2003

Decision Items

I. Mammalian Gene Collection (MGC) Project Update

After summarizing the history and progress of this trans-NIH effort to assemble and make available to the research community a comprehensive collection of full-length human and mouse cDNAs, Dr. Collins updated the group on the MGC External Steering Committee recommendations and pointed out the need to decide whether to continue the project and, if so, with what parameters. He also introduced Dr. Strausberg, the project's day-to-day manager.

The group discussed a number of issues including —
• whether the project should shift to a targeted approach for the remaining genes,
• whether other organisms should be included, and
• whether adopting a three-year funding commitment in lieu of the current single-year approach is advisable.
Dr. Collins praised the current voluntary funding approach, and all agreed that it had worked well and should continue.

After a discussion of how the research community is using the information and MGC clones, Dr. Zerhouni summarized the group's consensus that the project continue, with voluntary contributions, and a three-year funding commitment. He asked Dr. Collins to coordinate with the ICs to develop a business plan that would capture the options for proceeding, including scope of work and a detailed budget.

ll. The World Health Report-2004: Knowledge for Better Health

Dr. Keusch discussed a WHO report scheduled to be published in October 2004 and asked if NIH should participate in a related pilot process on health research and health research systems that will ask the United States, France, and Australia to examine four core health research systems indicators:

• stewardship
• financing
• creating and sustaining resources
• producing and utilizing research

WHO officials have asked if NIH would agree to be one of the three pilot sites and address these indicators in the context of NIH research and research support. (NIH would not address the full complement of U.S. research and research support.)

After Dr. Keusch noted the various activities that would be involved, such as development of relevant criteria, data collection, and drafting and editing, the group discussed the burden of such new tasks. Dr. Zerhouni then asked that Dr. Keusch work with trans-NIH staff to draft a proposal defining the scope of possible NIH participation and specifying the financial and staff issues any such participation would involve.

Discussion Items

III. Concept Presentation: Research Agencies Consortium for Global Health Research

Dr. Keusch reviewed efforts over the past dozen years to bring attention to the relationships among health research, global health, and economic productivity, citing specifically the 1990 Evans Commission, the 1993 World Development Report on investing in health, the 1996 IOM report on America's vital interest in global health, the 1998 Global Forum on Health Research, and the 2001 report of the WHO Commission on Macroeconomics and Health. He then presented possible models for a global consortium to consider such issues. He stressed that early involvement would allow the NIH to have input in the direction and form of international activities that are certain to come. After discussion, the group agreed that the NIH should encourage, facilitate, and sit at the table of a voluntary gathering of research organizations in a collaborative endeavor to explore opportunities in this area.

IV. HIPAA Update

Because of time constraints, this discussion was postponed to a future meeting.

Dale Johnson
cc: OD Staff

This page last reviewed on August 1, 2011

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