The Center for Truth in Science is requesting applications from qualified researchers to perform an independent systematic review of the literature used in assessing the relationship between the use of acetaminophen (paracetamol, N-acetyl-p-amino-phenol, APAP) during pregnancy and the risk of neurodevelopment disorders in the exposed child, including Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).

Interested parties can access the request for proposal (RFP) here. Applications will be accepted until April 5, 2024. The purpose of this work is to:

  1. Determine the extent to which scientific evidence demonstrates a clear causal link between prenatal exposure to acetaminophen at different doses, and neurodevelopment disorders. This should include any synergistic or antagonistic factors.
  2. Apply accepted state-of-the-art systematic review methods to determine what conclusions can be scientifically drawn and supported from the highest quality existing studies, including (where systematic bias is evaluated) the consideration and evaluation of any systematic bias and its direction and estimated magnitude.
  3. Determine reasons for conflicting or contradictory findings among existing studies, with special emphasis on identified confounders.
  4. Develop recommendations for additional research that can improve the accuracy and reliability of findings in this area.

Interested parties can click here for more information and to apply.

About the Center for Truth in Science

The Center for Truth in Science, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, is on a mission to examine the quality of evidence on issues at the intersection of science, justice, and the economy.

To advance knowledge and bring clarity to timely scientific issues, the Center awards grants to well-credentialed and respected independent researchers from around the world to perform systematic reviews of existing studies, as well as conduct original research on emerging issues.

Below are the projects the Center has funded in the past, all of which have been accepted for peer-reviewed publication:

  • June 2023: Systematic review of the association between talc and female reproductive tract cancers performed by Stantec and published in Frontiers in Toxicology. Abstract was accepted for a poster presentation at the 2022 Society of Toxicology meeting.
  • October 2022: Systematic review of the evidence of the pulmonary carcinogenicity of talc performed by Cardno ChemRisk and published in Frontiers in Public Health.
  • September 2022: Systematic review of the evidence on ethylene oxide as a human carcinogen performed by Cardno ChemRisk and published in Chemico-Biological Interactions. Abstract was accepted for a poster presentation at the 2022 Society of Toxicology meeting.
  • May 2022: Critical review of PFAS performed by the University of Rovira i Virgili in Catalonia and published in Environmental Research. A first presentation on the findings took place at the Florous Global Conference on PFAS in October 2021, including a poster and an oral presentation.
  • March 2022: Meta-analyses of glyphosate and Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma performed by SciPinion and published in the Journal of Toxicology and Risk Assessment. Abstract was accepted for a poster presentation at the 2022 Society of Toxicology meeting.

The Center has also awarded a research grant to ToxStrategies LLC to perform a state-of-the-art systematic review of studies examining the relationship between myeloid leukemia and other lymphohematopoietic (LHP) cancers, and exposure to inhaled formaldehyde. The findings have been submitted to a peer-reviewed journal.

These review papers use rigorous guidelines and established protocols provide clear answers to difficult questions: What do we really know about the risk of a given exposure? Are there gaps in evidence? Is more research needed, and if so, what type?

Our Grant Process

The grants are managed by Margaret (Peggy) Murray, Ph.D., the research director of the Center for Truth in Science. Dr. Murray ensures all projects meet the highest standard of scientific integrity and are conducted in line with the methods and protocols specified in the grant proposals.

To evaluate past proposals and research teams, Dr. Murray drew from years of experience working at the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) to design a process and assemble a highly qualified team of independent peer reviewers, including primarily senior faculty in schools of public health, medicine, and toxicology, and some advanced level toxicologists, risk analysts, and epidemiologists working for independent private consulting firms.

There were no reviewers working in private manufacturing or industry. The evaluation process followed standard requirements of NIH peer review, including the signing of conflict of interest statements and closed independent review meetings which allowed no input from Center staff. The panel of reviewers included many scientists who had experience serving on NIH reviews.

After review and scoring, proposals were chosen by the Center based on the highest scores and reviewer comments. Once grants were awarded, the Center had no influence on the direction and work of the scientists as they performed the reviews, and was not involved in any way in writing and preparing the resulting manuscripts or choosing where to submit them.

We are proud to support talented researchers as they work to deliver objective, unbiased findings to address some of the most complex and contentious scientific questions facing the world today.

Interested parties can click here for more information and to apply.

This article has been updated to reflect an extended deadline for applications.