Two US Representatives sent a letter to NIH Director Francis Collins asking him to explain how certain grants came to be funded. Representatives Joe Barton (R-Texas) and Greg Walden (R-Ore.) ask Collins to provide the following information about certain projects: their impact scores, the number of peer reviewers who looked over the application at both the first meeting and during the second review, the scores given and the payline, and to list the number of grants reviewed at the meeting and how many made it to the second round. The representatives write that they know NIH has changed its peer review process for 2010 but they still wonder how some grants were deemed important enough. "At first glance, some of the grants we identified do not seem to meet this standard," they write. Among the grants highlighted by Barton and Walden are studying drug use and HIV risk in Thai women, drug use in Brazilian rave culture, barriers to correct condom use, alcohol use and risk among young adult food service workers, among others.
Walden speaks with Fox News here: