Congress has again made funds available to the Department of Defense (DOD) for the Bone Marrow Failure Research Program (BMFRP). The DOD, in turn, is making funds available to scientists around the world with the vision of understanding and curing bone marrow failure diseases.

Researchers apply to DOD for support of their research and for research training by submitting an application to be put through the process of peer review. The peer review panel usually consists of ten to fifteen scientists with specific expertise and, unique to the DOD program, one to two people living with bone marrow failure appointed to serve as consumer reviewers. This panel is tasked with assessing the scientific and technical strengths of research applications according to an established set of evaluation criteria.

The DBAF is pleased to announce that our Board Member, Jacy Downey, PhD has been accepted to serve as a consumer reviewer. Jacy stated,  Jacy (2)

“I’m excited to be given the opportunity to represent the DBA community as a reviewer for important bone marrow failure projects to be funded by the DOD. I will do my best to serve the interests and needs of my DBA family.”

Individuals who have first-hand experience with bone marrow failure and who exhibit accomplishments and commitment to bone marrow failure advocacy and/or support are qualified to participate in scientific peer review as consumer reviewers. Comments made by consumers help to broaden the discussions by including issues such as the quality of life for those living with bone marrow failure, psychosocial needs, and ethical issues.

Consumers represent the perspective of patients, survivors, and family members to the peer review process. Inclusion of consumer reviewers enables those affected by bone marrow failure to participate in the process that helps set the direction for current and future research.

Congratulations to Jacy!