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APS issues new policy requiring identification of sex or gender in reporting scientific research
Date:3/2/2012

conception and throughout the life span, affecting behavior, perception, and health. However, a recent published review of basic science journals, including studies of cells in culture from high impact cardiovascular journals, and of basic and clinical scientific literature, suggests that sex of experimental material is not consistently reported.

"The literature review found that less than 40 percent of studies using experimental animals and only about 25 percent of studies using cells in culture identified the sex of the experimental material. This percentage is low given the growing knowledge base indicating that physiology and pathophysiology differ between male and female animals and humans beyond reproductive function to include all physiological systems," according to the editorial.

The article offers future authors guidance on how the sex of experimental material should be reported. Proposed IOM definitions state that "sex" is a biological construct dictated by the presence of sex chromosome and in animals and humans the presence of functional reproductive organs. On the other hand, "gender" is a cultural concept referring to behaviors which might be directed by specific stimuli (visual, olfactory) or by psychosocial expectations that result from assigned or perceived sex and therefore can influence biological outcomes. The new editorial policy for all APS journals requires the reporting of sex for cells, tissues and experimental animals and humans (i.e. male and female) or gender where appropriate and suitable for the experimental design of the research effort. "In the era of physiological genomics and individualized medicine, the presence of an XX or XY chromosomal complement is fundamental to the genome of an individual person, animal, tissue or cell," writes the author.

Publication and Clinical Medicine

Dr. Miller, who is a past member of the APS governing Council and who has held leadership positions fo
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Contact: Donna Krupa
dkrupa@the-aps.org
301-634-7209
American Physiological Society
Source:Eurekalert

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