Charge to the External Scientific Panel, 2003-2005

Responsibilities of the ESP

  • There will be two face-to-face meetings per year with the Pharmacogenetics Research Network (PGRN), approximately 6 months apart.
  • The ESP will be advisory to the PGRN investigators.
  • The ESP will provide distinct categories of advice: suggestions (things to think about), and recommendations (items for the PGRN to take action on, or to explain not taking action on).
  • Consistent with its role of reporting to the PGRN, a written report will be prepared for the investigators after each meeting (see below).
  • The NIH institutes will consider the pattern of responsiveness of the PGRN and its effective use of the ESP in evaluating progress of the PGRN.
  • In general, the ESP will put its emphasis on global network-wide activities, although occasionally specific research groups’ needs may be addressed.
  • The main aims are to help the investigators think broadly and to help push the science forward, thus to assist the PGRN in functioning as a truly interactive network.

Written Report and Responses

  • At meetings, a scientific writer will capture short summaries of presentations, provide synopses of the Q & A sessions between the ESP and PGRN, and incorporate suggestions and recommendations from the ESP Chair’s notes.
  • The report will be checked by: 1.) the ESP Chair, 2.) the ESP members (by e-mails or conference call if necessary), and 3.) the PGRN members (for error correction). It will then be declared completed and formally shared.
  • The PGRN will be expected to respond in writing to the ESP, within 2 months after receiving the report, in a letter written by the PGRN Chair.
  • The ESP’s report and network’s response should be conveyed to NIH (drafts will have been seen) by the PGRN as part of a regular system of periodic reporting (e.g., semi-annual or quarterly) on the network’s progress.

Communications with the PGRN

  • The ESP’s first emphasis will be kept on giving the PGRN network-based advice.
  • Working subcommittees of the PGRN may invite individual members of the ESP to contribute to activities (e.g., to join a call).
  • Informal questions may be directed to individual ESP members based upon their scientific areas of expertise, either at the network or research group level.
  • As a “good practice,” a brief listing of disclosures of ESP members’ significant associations with the PGRN will be maintained at NIH.

Terms of appointment and membership

  • The initial terms of appointment are expected to be for two years, with one year renewals upon mutual agreement.
  • Ad hoc members may be added as the need arises.
  • The ESP itself or the PGRN may make suggestions for membership changes to ensure that the expertise and breadth of the group are sufficient; this will be a negotiation process, and will be subject to the approval of NIH.