Sex Differences and Implications for Translational Neuroscience Research - Workshop Summary


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Biological differences between the sexes influence not only individual health but also public health, biomedical research, and health care. For example, studies have shown that males and females can have drastically different responses to certain medications, and in some cases these differences have prompted product recalls. In addition, researchers have begun to understand how sex differences affect characteristics such as pain perception, infection, and longevity. Research that takes sex differences into account may provide scientists, pharmaceutical companies, and health care providers with a better understanding of the potential effects of medications and therapies.

The IOM held a workshop March 8-9, 2010, to discuss sex differences and their implications for translational neuroscience research, which bridges the gap between scientific discovery and practical applications. Speakers outlined the public health importance of studying sex differences in the nervous system and described how a better understanding of sex differences could affect health care delivery. Participants also discussed when sex differences should and should not be considered in research and how to design studies that evaluate sex differences. This document summarizes the workshop.

Click here to view the meeting agenda and presentations.