Available Ethics and Regulatory Resources

The Clinical Research Ethics Consultation Collaborative, a continuation of the Clinical Research Ethics Key Function Committee Consultation Working Group of the Clinical and Translational Science Awards (CTSA) consortium, funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH), launched its first clinical research ethics service nationwide, including the Georgia CTSA Regulatory Knowledge & Support program. The Georgia CTSA is a statewide partnership between Emory University, Morehouse School of Medicine (MSM), Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech), and University of Georgia (UGA) and is one of a national consortium striving to improve the way biomedical research is conducted across the country. The consortium, funded through the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences, by the NIH CTSA, shares a common vision to translate laboratory discoveries into treatments for patients, engage communities in clinical research efforts, and train the next generation of clinical investigators.

The consultancy features Regulatory Knowledge & Support leader Rebecca Pentz, PhD, professor of Research Ethics, Emory School of Medicine, as an available expert. She currently performs empirical ethics research on topics most pertinent to the Winship Cancer Institute, namely early drug development, with emphases on informed consent, biobanking, return of results, and genetic testing. "The NIH Bioethics Consultation Service is a very exciting opportunity to run difficult cases by some of the best in the field. Research ethical dilemmas, such as those featured in the Georgia CTSA Ethical Dilemmas in Scientific Research and Professional Integrity, and the ones used in the October 2014 issue of Nature are examples of what we will address," said Pentz.

This collaborative research ethics service will handle referrals from any Emory, MSM, Georgia Tech, or UGA faculty/staff/student. If you have a research ethics question or are pondering a research ethics dilemma, confidential discussions and non-binding advice are available. Call/text/email Rebecca Pentz at 404-831-1758/rpentz@emory.edu or call/email Gerard Vong at 404-727-1208/gerard.vong@emory.edu

The local team consisting of Pentz, John Banja, PhD, professor, Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, medical ethicist, Center for Ethics, Emory University, Neal Dickert, MD, PhD, assistant professor, Division of Cardiology, Emory University School of Medicine, and Gerard Vong, assistant professor, director, Master of Arts in Bioethics Porgram, Center for Ethics, Emory University, will respond with advice and non-binding recommendations. The requestors and ethicists can then submit the case to the National Consult service if such a referral is deemed useful.