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Bioethics commission plays early role in BRAIN Initiative
Date:5/14/2014

Washington, DC Calling for the integration of ethics across the life of neuroscientific research endeavors, the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues (Bioethics Commission) released volume one of its two-part response to President Obama's request related to the Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative. The report, Gray Matters: Integrative Approaches for Neuroscience, Ethics, and Society, includes four recommendations for institutions and individuals engaged in neuroscience research including government agencies and other funders.

"Neurological conditionswhich include addiction, chronic pain, dementia, depression, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, schizophrenia, stroke, and traumatic brain injury, among other conditionsaffect more than one billion people globally. Neuroscience has begun to make important breakthroughs, but given the complexity of the brain, we must better understand it in order to make desired progress," said Amy Gutmann, Ph.D., Bioethics Commission Chair. "But because research on our brains strikes at the very core of who we are, the ethical stakes of neuroscience research could not be higher. Ethicists and scientists should be together at the table in the earliest stages of research planning fostering a fluent two-way conversation. Too often in our nation's past, ethical lapses in research have had tragic consequences and derailed scientific progress."

President Obama asked the Bioethics Commission to play a critical role in ensuring that neuroscientific investigational methods and protocols are consistent with sound ethical principles and practices. Specifically the President asked the Bioethics Commission to "identify proactively a set of core ethical standards both to guide neuroscience research and to address some of the ethical dilemmas that may be raised by the application
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Contact: Jemma Weymouth
jweymouth@burnesscommunications.com
301-280-5706
Burness Communications
Source:Eurekalert

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