Human testing

A faculty committee to review all aspects of research using human subjects at Penn was formed Friday.

The 10-member group plans to address risks that research may pose and “to protect volunteers in the clinical trials we conduct,” President Judith Rodin stated.

Provost Robert L. Barchi, M.D., Ph.D., will chair the committee.

“The impetus for forming the committee was not Jesse Gelsinger’s death,” said committee member Linda Aiken, Ph.D., FAAN, FRCN, R.N., the Claire Fagin Leadership Professor of Nursing, referring to the death of a volunteer research subject at the Medical Center in September. “Penn is just looking to examine its procedures in light of scientific developments in the new century.”

Committee member Ralph D. Amado, Ph.D., vice provost for research, said the goal was “an audit of all the regulatory functions” pertaining to use of human research subjects. “A similar audit has already occurred pertaining to animal work.”

A complete list of committee members can be found on the Web at


Originally published on January 20, 2000