Category Archives: Events

Conference on Infant Mental Health to Focus on Ethics

The Indiana Association for Infant and Toddler Mental Health will hold its 13th Annual Conference on Infant Mental Health on August 12, 2011 at the Riley Outpatient Center at Riley Hospital in Indianapolis. This year’s conference is entitled, “Ethics in Early Childhood Fields: A Moral Psychological Approach.”

The conference features keynote presentations by Darcia Narvaez, PhD and Daniel Lapsley, PhD, both from University of Notre Dame; a presentation discussing ethics in early childhood by Margaret Gaffney, MD, of the IU Center for Bioethics; interactive sessions moderated by IU Conscience Project members; and a panel discussion highlighting practical applications of the information presented throughout the day. Continuing education is available for social workers, psychologist, and physicians (see brochure for details).

Sponsors and partners for this year’s conference include: the Indiana Department of Child Services, Indiana Head Start Collaboration Office, Indiana State Department of Health’s Sunny Start Project, Indiana University School of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry, the Indiana University Conscience Project, the Indiana University Center for Bioethics and the Riley Child Development Center LEND Program.

Please note that you can register by mail/FAX using the form in the brochure OR online through the MHAI website:


Attend the Third Annual Teaching Skills in International Research Ethics Workshop

TaSkR IIIThe IU Center for Bioethics and the IU-Moi University Academic Research Ethics Partnership will host its annual Teaching Skills in International Research Ethics (TaSkR) workshop April 12-14 in the Health Information and Translational Sciences (HITS) Building, room 1110.

This workshop will focus primarily on the ethics of research involving human subjects—both behavioral and biomedical—conducted in an international forum, as well as developing stronger pedagogical skills.

The workshop will be attended by over 40 participants plus faculty facilitators.  Participants include faculty who teach within the broad domain of international research ethics, whether this is in the classroom, through lectures, or mentoring students, fellows, and post-docs.  Attendees include faculty who teach in medicine, public health, behavioral science, and a number of liberal arts subjects.  Our guest speakers include: Henk ten Have (University of Duquesne) Peter Schwartz (Indiana University), Margaret Gaffney (Indiana University), Edwin Were (Moi University), Kenneth Goodman (University of Miami), Martin Were (Indiana University), Charles Rotimi (National Institutes of Health), and David Ayuku (Moi University).  We will be joined by Joseph Ali (Johns Hopkins University), Ross Upshur (University of Toronto), Henry Silverman (University of Maryland), and Solomon Benatar (University of Toronto, University of Cape Town). TaSkR will also include an African Fogarty Director’s Roundtable discussion.  We hope this discussion will lead to mutual problem solving strategies and enhance collaboration between the African Fogarty Directors.

There is no cost to attend.  For more information or to register, contact Kalli D. McBride, JD, at

Center News – Spring 2010

Teaching Skills in International Research Ethics (TaSkR) Workshop II
The Second TaSkR Workshop was successfully held February 3rd – 5th, 2010 in Nakuru, Kenya. This workshop was attended by 25 participants and faculty facilitators from both Moi University and Indiana University. The faculty facilitators were from various disciplines; medicine, reproductive health, public health, behavioral science, religious studies, medical education, anthropology, health services research, sociology, bioethics, and linguistics. TaSkR is a feature of the IU-Moi Academic Research Ethics Partnership (funded by grant from the NIH Fogarty International Center). Learn more about TaSkR on our website, at:

International Research Ethics master’s program, Moi University Eldoret Kenya
In February 2010, the Senate of Moi University in Eldoret, Kenya approved a new master’s program in international research ethics. By design, the new program collaborates with a similar graduate level opportunity at IUPUI, the International Research Ethics, MA offered in the Philosophy department. The two programs are a feature of the IU-Moi Academic Research Ethics Partnership (funded by grant from the NIH Fogarty International Center). To learn more about this program, visit our website at:

Biobanks, Bioethics and Sophia University (Japan)
February 23, 2010, the Center for Bioethics hosted a delegation of 8 faculty from Japanese Universities led by Prof. Satoko Tatsui (Faculty of Law Meijigakuin University, Tokyo). The visit had three goals: to discuss ethics and governance on human biobanks and genetic databases in the US and Japan; the policy-making process in various circumstances; and the activities of the IUCB. The visit is a part of the preparatory work that this team is undertaking to establish a center for bioethics at Sophia University. We look forward to the future collaborations that will result from this successful, day-long visit.

Medical Ethics and Professionalism Elective
Indiana University School of Medicine students in their 3rd and 4th years have the option to enroll in a four week ethics elective. IUCB faculty investigator, Meg Gaffney leads this elective with participation from several of the Center’s investigators and affiliates. The most recent course (February 2010) included contributions from Eric M. Meslin, Peter Schwartz, and Kimberly Quaid. The Medical Ethics and Professionalism elective is offered annually in February. Enrollment is limited.

Students may also propose and develop an independent ethics elective or project at any time during the course of their medical studies.

IUCB in the News

Kristen Gerencher. Health reform a hot topic in bioethics circles. MarketWatch. March 19, 2010.
Office of External Affairs. Leadership forum reminds leaders of the power of diversity. Kelley School of Business [News], IUPUI. March 2, 2010.
Marilynn Marchione. AP IMPACT: Testing curbs some genetic diseases. 13 WTHR News. February 21, 2010.
Sound Ethics: How Biobanks Work. Sound Medicine. February 14, 2010.
Molecular Medicine Program Offers Hands-On Research for High School Students. IUPUI News Center. February 12, 2010.
Sound Ethics: Biobanks & Pediatric Research. Sound Medicine. February 7, 2010.

Recent Publications

Jere Odell. Peer-Driven Recruitment: Research Ethics in the Academic Literature. Indiana Bioethics. March 31, 2010.
Jere Odell. Comparative Effectiveness: Research Ethics in the News. Indiana Bioethics. March 15, 2010.
Katherine Drabiak-Syed. Newborn blood spot banking: approaches to consent. PredictER Law and Policy Update. Indiana University Center for Bioethics. March 12, 2010.
Katherine Drabiak-Syed. Transparency of Texas’ NBS Transfer and Reassessing Evasive Statutory Interpretation. PredictER News. March 9, 2010.
Jere Odell. Newborn Blood Spots, Biobanks & the Law: Research Ethics in the News. Indiana Bioethics. February 26, 2010.
Eric M. Meslin. Bank On It. Science Progress. February 25, 2010.
Katherine Drabiak-Syed. Direct-to-Consumer Fetal Sex Prediction Tests: the US is Not Immune to Sex Selection. PredictER News. February 2, 2010.
Research Ethics News Digest – January 2010. Indiana University Center for Bioethics. February 2, 2010.
Peter H. Schwartz. 2009 Walter C. Randall Lecture in Bioethics. Autonomy and consent in biobanks. Physiologist. 2010 Feb;53(1):1, 3-7.
Jere Odell. Autism, MMR, Wakefield and the GMC: Research Ethics in the News. Indiana Bioethics. January 29, 2010.

Recent Presentations

Kimberly A. Quaid. Diagnosis and Disclosure. 2010 Spring Symposium of the Indiana Alzheimer Center, Herron School of Art and Design, Indianapolis, IN. March 20, 2010.
Eric M. Meslin. The Evolution of Bioethics. Darwin Day Science Conference, Center for Inquiry Indiana and IUPUI Freethinkers. March 20, 2010.
Peter H. Schwartz. Mammograms, Decision-Making, and Values. Session: “Evidence in Breast Cancer Screening Decisions: Politics, Policy, and Patient Care,” Bioethics for Breakfast seminar series, Hall, Render, Killian, Heath & Lyman, P.C. and IU Center for Bioethics, Indianapolis, IN, March 5, 2010.
Eric M. Meslin. Science Policy Leadership in a (somewhat) Flat World: Why Bioethics Matters. Fifth Multi-Sector Forum of the Randall L. Tobias Center for Leadership Excellence, Indianapolis, Indiana. February 26, 2010.
Eric M. Meslin. The Underdeveloped Role of Science Policy in Meeting Our Ethical Obligations in Global Health. IU School of Medicine, February 17, 2010.
Katherine Drabiak-Syed. Panelist. Non-Traditional Health Law Careers. Indiana University School of Law- Indianapolis, Indianapolis, Indiana. February 16, 2010.
Kimberly A. Quaid. Ethical Issues in Genetic Testing. The Amelia Project: Giving Wings to Research, University Place Conference Center, Indianapolis, IN. February 13, 2010.
Katherine Drabiak-Syed. Baby Gender Mentor: Class Action Litigation Calls Attention to a Deficient Federal Regulatory Framework for DTC Genetic Tests, Politicized State Statutory Construction, and a Lack of Informed Consent. Predictive Health Ethics Research (PredictER) meeting, Indianapolis, Indiana. January 25, 2010.

Ethics Events

Peter H. Schwartz. Medicine unleashed: eliminating risk and stopping aging. Ethics at Lunch. IU School of Medicine. MS B26. 12:00 – 1:00 PM. April 6, 2010.
Physician Assisted Suicide? End-of-Life Care and Choices: A Discussion on Proposed Legal Changes. Presenters: Barbara Coombs Lee, PA, FNP, JD, and Katherine Drabiak-Syed, JD. Health Law Society. Indiana University School of Law – Indianapolis, Inlow Hall, RM 385. 4:15 PM. April 6, 2010.
Fairbanks Ethics Lecture Series: Ethical Treatment of the Defiant and Disruptive Patient. Michael Webber, MD. Riley Outpatient Center Auditorium, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis. 12:00-1:00 PM. April 7, 2010.
Seminar in Medical Humanities: The History of Rh Sensitization Disease and Its ‘Cure’. Dr. Peter Marcus, Ob/Gyn. Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis. MS 311A/B.  12:00 – 1:00 PM. April 8, 2010.
Indiana CTSI 2nd Annual Meeting: A Case for Good Governance: Consent, Public trust, Commercialization and other issues for Biobanks. Timothy Caulfield, LL.M. Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis. Health Information and Translational Sciences (HITS) Building. 1:00 – 1:30 PM. April 19, 2010.
Seminar in Medical Humanities: Modeling Life Through Death: Population Histories and the Evidence for Demographic and Epidemiological Change in the Late Prehistoric Midwest. Jeremy Wilson. IUPUI. Room TBA. 12:00 – 1:00 PM. April 19, 2010.
PredictER Meeting: Tailored Therapeutics. Mitchell Klopfenstien and colleagues from Eli Lilly. IU Center for Bioethics, Indianapolis. 3:00 – 4:00 PM. April 26, 2010.
Peter H. Schwartz. Panel discussion of breast cancer screening guidelines. The 2010 Doris H. Merritt, MD Lectureship in Women’s Health, IU National Center of Excellence in Women’s Health. Joseph Walter Hall (R3) Room 203. Indianapolis. 8:15 – 10:30 AM. April 28, 2010.
Fairbanks Ethics Lecture Series: Cultural Diversity/Cultural Sensitivity. Rita Bair, MD, MPH . Indiana University School of Medicine. Riley Outpatient Center Auditorium. Indianapolis. 12:00-1:00 PM. May 5, 2010.

Other Events

Fairbanks Ethics Lecture Series 2009-2010
History of Medicine Speaker Series, 2009-2010 [PDF]
Poynter Center for the Study of Ethics and American Institutions, Spring 2010
PredictER Meetings, Spring Schedule 2010 [PDF]
Purdue Bioethics Seminar Series, Schedule 2009 – 2010

Bioethics Journal Club: Revisiting the USPTO’s Examination Guidelines for Gene Patents

Please join us for the first spring semester meeting of the Bioethics Journal Club on Thursday, January 14th from 4:00-4:45pm in HITS bldg, room 3001 (located in the Biostats department across from the IU Center for Bioethics. The Bioethics Journal Club meeting will be an informal discussion led by one of the Bioethics faculty members. Katherine Drabiak-Syed will facilitate a discussion of:

Revisiting the USPTO’s Examination Guidelines for Gene Patents: Congressional Inaction, USPTO Restraint, and Judicial Remedy. Journal of International Biotechnology Law 2009 Sept;6(5):204–9. DOI: 10.1515/JIBL.2009.27

Bioethics Journal Club: Religious Belief and Surrogate Decision Making

Please join us for the next meeting of the Bioethics Journal Club on Thursday, November 12th from 4:00-4:45pm at the IU Center for Bioethics, 410 W 10th Street, Suite 3100, Indianapolis, IN.

The Bioethics Journal Club meeting will be an informal discussion led by Meg Gaffney, MD.  Dr. Gaffney is a Faculty Investigator at the Indiana University Center for Bioethics and Clinical Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine.  In addition, she is the director of the Introduction to Clinical Medicine Course and of the Moral Reasoning and Ethical Judgment competency in the revised curriculum of the Indiana University School of Medicine. Dr. Gaffney also chairs the Wishard Ethics Committee, serves on the Clarian and Riley Hospital ethics committees, and collaborates on the Indiana University Conscience Project.  She will facilitate a discussion on an article entitled “Religious Belief and Surrogate Medical Decision Making.”

Light refreshments will also be provided. Contact Maureen Craney at for more information.

Center News, September 2009

This month Indiana University Center for Bioethics worked with its collaborators to launch two new initiatives: an International Research Ethics concentration (a new track in the Masters degree offered by the Department of Philosophy) and the Comparative Effectiveness Study Group. The International Research Ethics (IRE) concentration offers students and professionals the opportunity to study the ethical and policy issues of research involving multinational populations and partners. Read the press release or learn more about this new educational opportunity on our website at

The Comparative Effectiveness Study Group (CESG) was recently funded by the Indiana Humanities Council to provide two public lectures. The CESG is comprised of experts from The Center for Health Policy, The Hall Center for Law and Health, the Center for Bioethics, and other friends of the Consortium for Health Policy, Law and Bioethics. The Group will examine the ethical, legal and policy issues of comparative effectiveness research.


Be sure to attend ethics events hosted by our friends and partners.

Lucia D. Wocial, RN, PhD. Checking the Vital Signs of Clarian Nurses: Where are we with Moral Distress? Fairbanks Ethics Lecture Series. October 7, 2009. 12:00-1:00 PM. Riley Out-Patient Center Auditorium. [View the entire 2009-2010 Schedule.]

Jason Eberl, PhD. Discussing: Buchanan A. Human nature and enhancement. Bioethics. 2009 Mar;23(3):141-50. Bioethics Journal Club. October 8, 2009. 4:00-4:45 PM. IUCB, HITS 3139.

Rob Kunzman. Write These Laws On Your Children. Poynter Center Roundtable. October 8, 2009. 4:00-5:30 PM. Poynter Center for the Study of Ethics and American Institutions, 618 East Third Street, Bloomington IN 47405-3862. [Poynter Center Roundtables, Fall 2009]

Guo Liping, Associate Director, Medical Humanities Institute, Peking University Health Science Center . Medical Humanities in China. October 19, 2009, 12:00 – 1:00 PM. CA Room 438. [View the entire 2009-2010 schedule – PDF 38 KB.]

Robert Crouch. Medical Interventions on Children for Nonmedical Reasons: How Far May Parents Go? Health Care Ethics Seminars. October 22, 2009. 4:00-5:15 PM. Poynter Center for the Study of Ethics and American Institutions, 618 East Third Street, Bloomington IN 47405-3862. [View the Health Care Ethics Seminars, Fall 2009 schedule.]

Robert Katz. The Tissue Transplantation Industry: A Case Study in How Market Actors Can Reduce Transaction Costs by Economizing on Moral Externalities. October 26, 2009. 3:00-4:00 PM; IUCB, HITS 3139. [View PredictER’s Fall 2009 Schedule; PDF – 59 KB.]

New Items in the Bioethics Digital Library

Schwartz PH. Decision and discovery in defining ‘disease’. In: Kincaid H, McKitrick J, editors. Establishing medical reality: essays in the metaphysics and epistemology of biomedical science. Dordrecht: Springer; 2007. p. 47-63.

Schwartz PH. Defining dysfunction: natural selection, design, and drawing a line. Philosophy of Science. July 2007;74(3):364-385.

Schwartz PH, Meslin EM. The ethics of information: absolute risk reduction and patient understanding of screening. J Gen Intern Med. 2008 Jun;23(6):867-70.

Schwartz PH. Disclosure and rationality: comparative risk information and decision-making about prevention. Theor Med Bioeth. 2009;30(3):199-213.


Center News, August 2009

This month at the Indiana University Center for Bioethics (IUCB) wraps up a busy summer break and begins a new academic year.

Health Care Reform

Eric M. Meslin (IUCB director) and Aaron Carroll contributed to the nation’s focus on health care reform. Meslin participated in a public debate hosted by Smaller Indiana and also contributed to the Association of Bioethics Program Directors statement, “Three Myths about the Ethics of Health Care Reform.”

Among other media appearances, Carroll discussed health reform and the results of a new survey about government involvement in health insurance on Sound Medicine.  On a related topic, IUCB also released a new survey report co-authored with Indiana University Center for Health Policy and Professionalism Research (CHPPR): Do Americans believe the “myths” about health care reform? Yes, they do.

Recent Papers and Presentations

Faculty Investigator, Katherine Drabiak-Syed presented “Revisiting the USPTO’s Examination Guidelines for Gene Patents: Congressional Inaction, USPTO Restraint, and Judicial Remedy” at the August 17, 2009 PredictER meeting.

As the research ethics community waits for President Obama to name a new national bioethics commission, Eric M. Meslin reflects on the history and role of the commissions in “Should bioethics commissions have more authority?” for Bioethics Forum (August 4, 2009).

Other new publications from the Center and its faculty investigators include:

Sly PD, Eskenazi B, Pronczuk J, Srám R, Diaz-Barriga F, Machin DG, Carpenter DO, Surdu S, Meslin EM. Ethical issues in measuring biomarkers in children’s environmental health. Environ Health Perspect. 2009 Aug;117(8):1185-90.

Green RC, Roberts JS, Cupples LA, Relkin NR, Whitehouse PJ, Brown T, Eckert SL, Butson M, Sadovnick AD, Quaid KA, Chen C, Cook-Deegan R, Farrer LA; REVEAL Study Group. Disclosure of APOE genotype for risk of Alzheimer’s disease. N Engl J Med. 2009 Jul 16;361(3):245-54. PMID: 19605829

New Research Assistant

IUCB welcomes Kalli McBride as our new graduate, research assistant. Kalli is pursuing a dual degree (J.D., M.A.) in Law and Bioethics and will be working closely with our faculty on several programs.

Upcoming Events

Richard Gunderman, MD. Can We Do Well By Doing Good? IUSM Ethics at Lunch. August 27, 2009. Noon. VanNuys Medical Science Building, Room B13.

Jennifer Girod and Andy Klein. Predictive Health and Toxic Torts. PredictER Meeting. August 31, 2009. 3:00 pm, Indiana University Center for Bioethics.

Richard Gunderman, MD, PhD. Healing as calling. Fairbanks Ethics Lecture Series. Noon. Methodist Petticrew Auditorium. September 2, 2009.

George Sledge and Pamela Perry. Physician and Patient Experience of Recurrent Cancer Treatment; Pharmacogenomics and Personalized Medicine. PredictER Meeting, September 21, 2009. 3:30 pm, Indiana University Center for Bioethics.

Fairbanks Ethics Lecture Series 2009-2010

History of Medicine Speaker Series, 2009-2010

PredictER Meetings, Fall Schedule 2009

– J.O.