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NHGRI to Issue RFA on Linking Genome-Wide Biorepository Studies with Electronic Medical Records

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) - The National Human Genome Research Institute plans to fund the development of methods and procedures for using electronic medical records in genome-wide studies that rely on biorepositories.
In a notice of intent issued last week, NHGRI said it will issue a request for applications in the spring of 2007 that will fund groups “affiliated with existing biorepositories” to develop methods and procedures for “genome-wide studies in participants with phenotypes and environmental exposures defined by electronic medical records, with the intent of widespread sharing of the resulting individual genotype-phenotype data.”
NHGRI said it expects to review proposals and issue resources by the end of September. It did not say how much funding it expects to award under the program.
“The potential for leveraging existing health care systems for genomic research is vast, particularly in regard to speed, efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and potential for rapid translation to clinical care,” NHGRI said in the notice of intent. “The challenges posed by such research, however, must be carefully examined and addressed if risks are to be minimized and the full value of such repositories realized.”
The program will consider and address issues of consent and consultation connected to biorepository-based research, genome-wide technologies, and data sharing, NHGRI said.
The institute said it will support studies such as “harmonizing phenotypes, developing data-capture methods and analytic strategies, assessing data quality and potential biases, and evaluating or improving consent or data protection processes.”
Applicants should have access to DNA information from an existing biorepository with populations large enough to test genome-wide association hypotheses within a year of receiving the award.

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