1. Assessing the Scientific Premise of the Proposed Research
When considering the scientific premise or foundation of the proposed research, it is essential to consider the following:
- What are the general strengths and weaknesses of the prior research?
- Was the prior research performed with rigor?
- Were relevant biological variables considered and authenticated in the prior research?
- Is the premise consistent with existing theory and models?
For more information see the NIH Extramural Nexus blog post Scientific Premise in NIH Grant Applications.
2. Rigorous Experimental Design for Robust and Unbiased Results
When performing scientific research, it is essential that the research be designed and performed with rigor with respect to the following elements:
- Experimental design
- Reporting of results
For more information see the NIH Extramural Nexus blog post Scientific Rigor in NIH Grant Applications.
3. Consideration of Relevant Biological Variables
When designing and executing biological experiments, it is essential to consider all relevant variables, including:
For more information see the NIH Extramural Nexus blog post Consideration of Relevant Biological Variables in NIH Grant Applications.
4. Authentication of Key Biological and/or Chemical Resources
When undertaking experimental biology, it is essential to authenticate biological and chemical resources, e.g.:
- Cell lines
- Specialty chemicals
- Other biologics
Moreover, it is necessary to consider that key biological or chemical resources could:
- Differ from laboratory to laboratory, or over time - this can apply to cell lines, genetically modified animals or cells, or key chemicals
- Vary in qualities or qualifications that could influence the research data
Examples for validation procedures include:
- Short tandem repeat (STR) profiling and mycoplasma testing for cell lines
- Gas chromatography or mass spectrometry for key chemicals
- PCR or Southern blot to confirm genomic modifications
For more information see the NIH Extramural Nexus blog post Authentication of Key Biological and/or Chemical Resources in NIH Grant Applications.
5. Data Availability and Material Sharing
- Research labs that generate plasmids, constructs, and protocols as part of their research should share these resources with other academic institutions freely.
- All research labs should share raw data through relevant databases, such as:
- Software and computational tools should be shared through public repositories such as SourceForge and GitHub.
- NYU offers central data backup via an archive directory on the NYU High Performance Computer cluster (see also Facilities/Resources). Data are backed up to tape and stored in a remote facility.
Transparency in Reporting
Our policy is the following: “If it is published then it is open” and “publish not patent.” All research labs are strongly encourage to follow this policy.
- Research labs are strongly encouraged to publish in open-access journals or as open-access publications.
- Research labs are encouraged to make manuscripts available before publication in repositories such as Biorxiv to allow for open access and free, independent peer evaluation.
Licensing and patenting
- NYU Biology has a history of producing open source code. All labs are encouraged to make code freely available, e.g. under the LGPL and GPL licenses.
- If appropriate, the Office of Industrial Liaison at NYU is responsible for seeking out appropriate industry partners to commercially develop technology. Any licenses will contain provisions requiring the licensing company to diligently develop the technology.
- Should any patent be filed as a result of a lab’s work, it will not be licensed exclusively and will be made freely available to non-profit organizations. Decisions on whether to file a patent application will be based upon an evaluation of the commercial potential of the invention by the institutional patenting and licensing office.