Office of Research on Women's Health (ORWH)
Specialized Centers of Research on Sex Differences
Office of Research on Women’s Health Selects Third Round of Specialized Centers of Research on Sex Differences
Eleven new or continuing Specialized Centers of Research (SCOR) on Sex Differences awards have been announced by the Office of Research on Women’s Health (ORWH) at the National Institutes of Health. SCOR is an innovative interdisciplinary research program, focusing on sex differences and major medical conditions affecting women. Potential funding for these new or competing SCORs will total over $11 million per year for 5 years contingent upon available funding and is supported by ORWH and six other institutes at NIH.
The SCOR centers were selected on the basis of having at least three highly integrated, synergistic research projects that explore an important issue related to sex/gender health differences through interdisciplinary approaches. The programmatic management of each SCOR resides in the co-funding NIH institutes, and ORWH monitors progress in advancing sex differences research across the centers and coordinates the inter-SCOR interactions. The centers are co-funded by the National Institute on Aging, National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, the National Institute of Diabetes, Digestive and Kidney Diseases, the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the National Institute of Mental Health, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
One of the major goals of the new NIH Strategic Plan, Moving Into The Future With New Dimensions And Strategies: A Vision for 2020 For Women’s Health Research is “ to increase sex differences research in basic science studies” and it is hoped that the expansion of the SCOR Centers will help achieve this goal. The research areas of the 11 centers include musculoskeletal diseases, vascular dysfunction and cognitive decline, depression, reproductive health, metabolic disorders, pain and urinary tract infections (UTI) while incorporating a sex /gender perspective. Each of the SCOR’s individual projects must be related by a common theme, encompassing basic and clinical research paving the way for translation to clinical practice. An administrative unit at each institution oversees coordination of the individual projects.
“ORWH views these 11 SCOR institutions as instrumental to advancing the understanding of the role of sex differences in health and disease. The unique structure of the SCORs with inter related, basic and clinical projects designed with an interdisciplinary approach and supported through an administrative core were created to drive the understanding of sex/gender factors that will translate into clinical care and practice” said Janine Austin Clayton, M.D., director, ORWH.