Ethical, Legal and Social Implications Research Program

The ELSI Research Program fosters basic and applied research on the ethical, legal and social implications of genetic and genomic research for individuals, families and communities.

Research Domains

The ELSI Research Program funds and manages studies, and supports workshops, research consortia and policy conferences related to these topics. For a more in depth exploration of the program, read The Ethical, Legal and Social Implications Program of the National Human Genome Research Institute: Reflections on an Ongoing Experiment.

The NHGRI Division of Genomics and Society has identified the following three research domains to be considered for support by the Ethical, Legal and Social Implications (ELSI) Research Program. The domains are overlapping, and it is anticipated that many research projects will address issues that cut across domains. A more detailed discussion of these domains and a list of examples of possible research topics is available at ELSI Research Domains

Genetic and Genomic Research.  These projects may investigate and address the ethical, legal, social, and policy issues that arise in connection with the design and conduct of genetic and genomic research. 

Genetic and Genomic Health Care.  These projects may investigate and address the ethical, legal, social, and policy issues that arise in connection with the translation of genetic and genomic research into clinical medicine and health care in a variety of healthcare settings.

Broader Legal, Policy and Societal Issues.  These projects may investigate and address a range of broader ethical, legal, policy and societal issues raised by the use of genetic and genomic technologies and information in research, clinical or non-medical settings.

Centers of Excellence in ELSI Research

The Centers of Excellence in ELSI Research bring investigators from multiple disciplines together to work in innovative ways to address important new, or particularly persistent, ethical, legal, and social issues related to advances in genetics and genomics.

 

Learn More
People forming double helix

Reports

Genetic Testing

Genetic Discrimination and Health Insurance

Issues Related to the Conduct of Genetic Research

Underrepresented Minorities

Specific Research Topics

Program Reviews

Funding Opportunities

NIH is instituting a number of changes to how it categorizes clinical trial research. Many ELSI studies that previously were not considered clinical trials will now be categorized as such and will be subject to new application, review and reporting requirements.  Please visit the Clinical Trials definition website for guidance in determining how your study will be categorized. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact our ELSI program directors

ELSI applications that do not involve a clinical trial can still be submitted under the ELSI R01, R21 and R03 program announcements listed below. 

ELSI applications that are determined to involve a clinical trial cannot be submitted under these announcements and must now be submitted under either the NIH Parent R01--Clinical Trial Required (PA-18-345) or the NIH Parent R21--Clinical Trial Required (PA-18-344) program announcements.  When submitting these applications, researchers should use the PHS Assignment Request Form to request that NHGRI (and any other relevant Institutes or Centers) be assigned the grant, and to request study section review assignment to the Continuous Special Emphasis Panel on Societal and Ethical Issues in Research Study Section (ZRG1 SEIR).

ELSI Research Program Announcements (PA)

The NHGRI, along with several other National Institutes of Health (NIH) institutes, has released revised general program announcements to solicit research projects that anticipate, analyze, and address the ethical, legal, and social implications of the discovery of new genetic technologies and the availability and use of genetic information resulting from human genetics and genomic research.

  • Ethical, Legal, and Social Implications (ELSI) of Genomic Research Regular Research Program (R01) 
    PA-17-444 
    Application Receipt Date(s): Standard dates apply
    Expiration Date: September 8, 2020
     
  • Ethical, Legal, and Social Implications (ELSI) of Genomic Research Small Research 
    Grant Program (R03)
    PA-17-445
    Application Receipt Date(s): Standard dates apply
    Expiration Date: September 8, 2020
     
  • Ethical, Legal, and Social Implications (ELSI) of Genomic Research Exploratory/Developmental Research Program (R21) 
    PA-17-446 
    Application Receipt Date(s): Standard dates apply
    Expiration Date: September 8, 2020
NIH-wide Bioethical Research Funding Notice
  • Notice of Interest in High Priority Research in Bioethical, Legal, and Societal Implications of Biomedical Research 
    NOT-LM-17-001
ELSI Conference Grants

The NHGRI ELSI Program accepts Conference Grant (R13) applications. For specific instructions for preparing a conference grant application, see:

  • PA-16-294NIH Support for Conferences and Scientific Meetings (Parent R13)
    Application Receipt Dates: Standard Dates Apply 
ELSI Training and Career Development Funding Opportunities

The ELSI program participates in a number of training and career development funding opportunities.

International Bioethics Training

The Fogarty International Center's international bioethics training programs [fic.nih.gov] support education and research training to develop ethics expertise in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). The programs complement other global health research and research training programs in the mission areas of NIH Institutes and Centers.

  • PAR-16-081International Research Ethics Education and Curriculum Development Award (R25)
    This award, which NIH established in fiscal year 2000, supports curriculum development for master's level courses; courses for skill development, including practicum experiences; and mentoring activities.
     
  • PAR-16-082International Bioethics Research Training Program (D43)
    This new program support LMIC-U.S. collaborative institutional bioethics doctoral and postdoctoral research training programs that incorporate didactic, mentored research and career development components to prepare trainees for positions of scholarship and leadership at health research institutions in LMICs.
Pre- and Post-Doctoral Training Opportunities
  • PA-16-308:  Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award Individual Predoctoral Fellowship to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research 
  • Expiration Date: May 8, 2019
     
  • PA-16-309Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) Individual Predoctoral Fellowship (Parent F31) 
    Expiration Date: May 8, 2019
     
  • PA-16-307:  Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) Individual Postdoctoral Fellowship (Parent F32) 
    Expiration Date: May 8, 2019
     
  • PA-16-310:  Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) Individual Senior Fellowship (Parent F33) 
    Expiration Date: May 8, 2019
     
  • PA-18-403Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) Institutional Research Training Program (Parent T32) 
    Expiration Date: January 8, 2021
     
  • NOT-HG-15-004Notice of NHGRI Participation in PA-14-015 "Ruth L. Kirschstein NRSA Institutional Research Training Grants (Parent T32)" and Establishment of New Training Program in the Ethical, Legal and Social Implications of Genetic and Genomic Research
Career Development Opportunities 
  • PA-18-363: Mentored Research Scientist Development Award (Parent K01-Independent Clinical Trial Required) 
    Expiration Date: January 8, 2021
     
  • PA-18-369Mentored Clinical Scientist Research Career Development Award (Parent K01-Independent Clinical Trial Not Allowed) 
    Expiration Date: January 8, 2021 
     
  • PA-18-372: Mentored Research Scientist Development Award (Parent K01-Independent Clinical Trial Required) 
    Expiration Date: January 8, 2021
     
  • PA-18-373Mentored Clinical Scientist Research Career Development Award (Parent K01-Independent Clinical Trial Not Allowed) 
    Expiration Date: January 8, 2021 
     
  • PA-18-397: NIH Pathway to Independence Award (Parent K99/R00-Independent Clinical Trial Required) 
    Expiration Date: January 8, 2021 
     
  • PA-18-398: NIH Pathway to Independence Award (Parent K99/R00-Independent Clinical Trial Not Required ) 
    Expiration Date: January 8, 2021 
  • PA-16-288Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (Admin Supp)
    Expiration Date: September 30, 2019

  • PA-16-289Research Supplements to Promote Re-Entry into Biomedical and Behavioral Research Careers (Admin Supp)
    Expiration Date: September 30, 2019

Program Staff

Joy Boyer, B.A.
Joy Boyer, B.A.
  • Program Director
  • Division of Genomics and Society
Dave Kaufman, Ph.D.
Dave Kaufman, Ph.D.
  • Program Director
  • Division of Genomics and Society
Nicole C. Lockhart, Ph.D.
Nicole C. Lockhart, Ph.D.
  • Health Sciences Administrator
  • Division of Genomics and Society
Natalie Pino
Natalie Pino
  • Scientific Program Analyst
  • Division of Genome Sciences
Alex Raphael
Alex Raphael
  • Program Analyst
  • Division of Genome Sciences
Tasha A. Stewart
Tasha A. Stewart
  • Program Assistant
  • Division of Genomics and Society

Last updated: April 19, 2019