Making Research Safer for Human Subjects: Q&A with Andrew Wechsler
By Mark Eggerts, Drexel Quarterly
November 12, 2013
Each volunteer participant in Drexel University's 1,400 active research projects involving human subjects represents an opportunity to advance knowledge and save or improve lives. But each also represents a risk for human suffering and for irreparable damage to Drexel's research enterprise if something goes wrong.
To mitigate that risk, Drexel researchers set out to ensure that their protocols for protecting human subjects met the very highest standards, culminating this summer in full accreditation by the Association for the Accreditation of Human Research Protection Programs (AAHRPP). Fewer than 200 research organizations in the world hold AAHRPP accreditation, including fewer than 100 academic institutions.
Andrew Wechsler, MD, a professor of cardiothoracic surgery in the College of Medicine, chairs one of the University's three Institutional Research Boards (IRBs) responsible for approval of human subject research. DrexelNow asked Wechsler, who is also a heart surgeon and researcher known for his work in protecting hearts against ischemic injury and reconstructing damaged hearts, for some insight into the implications of AAHRPP accreditation.
Read more at Drexel Now.