Publicizing the outcomes of NIH-funded projects and communicating the role of NIH support in biomedical research improves public understanding of how we, the biomedical research community as a whole, are working to improve human health.
This important information for researchers and public information officers (PIOs) describes how to correctly acknowledge NIH in your presentations, papers, posters, and press releases.
Requirements for Acknowledging NIH-Supported Research
The NIH grants policy statement outlines requirements for acknowledging Federal funding in the following products when describing projects or programs funded in whole or in part with NIH funds:
press releases and other public statements
other publications or documents about research that is funded by NIH
requests for proposals and bid invitations
and other documents describing projects or programs funded in whole or in part with Federal money
must include the following two statements:
1. A specific acknowledgment of NIH grant support, such as:
"Research reported in this [publication/press release] was supported by [name of the Institute(s), Center, or other NIH offices] of the National Institutes of Health under award number [specific NIH grant number(s) in this format:R01GM987654]."
(If you have more than one grant, only cite the grant(s) that supported the research described in the article or presentation.)
2. An acknowledgement of the level of NIH funding that indicates:
a. the percentage and dollar amounts of the total program or project costs financed with Federal money and
b. the percentage and dollar amount of the total costs financed by nongovernmental sources.
3. A disclaimer that says:
"The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health."
NIH communicates this requirement to its grantees in the NIH notice of award, and the NIH Grants Policy Statement (Section 8.2.1). This acknowledgement statement also meets Federal regulations that require grantees to acknowledge Federal funding.
NIH also encourages grantees who have used or generated HeLa cell whole genome sequence data to acknowledge Henrietta Lacks and her family. Please see the FAQ below for more information.
Please also be aware that, in addition to this requirement to acknowledge Federal funding as described above, NIH also requires scientists to submit final peer-reviewed journal manuscripts that arise from NIH funds to the digital archive PubMed Central upon acceptance for publication. To help advance science and improve human health, the Policy requires that these papers are accessible to the public on PubMed Central no later than 12 months after publication. Please visit the NIH Public Access Policy page for more information about these requirements.
Information for Public Information Officers
NIH wants to work with you in broadly sharing the scientific advances of your researchers – follow these steps when publicizing NIH-supported research.
When writing a press release:
The specific acknowledgement and disclaimer statements mentioned above must be included in your press release text.
This can be placed in the footer of the release, but we also encourage mentioning NIH early in the text of your press release.
Here are a few examples:
“…. This study performed at the University of X, funded by the National Institutes of Health, reveals that… “
“…. , said University of X professor of medicine Jane Doe, whose research is supported by the National Institutes of Health”
When finalizing your press release:
NIH requests that, prior to issuing a press release, public information officers get in touch with the funding NIH institute or center (IC) in advance, to allow for coordination. Please visit the NIH media contacts directory or email firstname.lastname@example.org for help in identifying the appropriate NIH contact.
Universities using EurekAlert! or Newswise can include the NIH grant number when submitting releases, and this will automatically link your press release to the grant record in RePORTER, a comprehensive searchable public database of NIH grants. Following a project search on REPORTER, users can then access press releases related to their search results in the “News & More” tab.
PIOs that do not use EurekAlert! or Newswise can contact NIH for help in linking their press release to grant records on RePORTER.
Don’t forget: using the proper grant number format is critical for linking to the correct NIH grant record!
If you know the grant number, look for the two letter code indicating which NIH institute or center funded the award. If you are a public information officer and unable to reach the principal investigator or find the information you need through RePORTER, please contact us at email@example.com and we'll figure it out with you.
Yes, NIH policy still requires including the grant number(s) in the text of the press release (even if in the footer). Filling out the grant number in EurekAlert! or Newswise will link the release to the grant in RePORTER, and allow the public to find your release when searching NIH-funded research projects.
The NIH PIO Network can help you network with other health and science communications professionals, and give you access to NIH resources that enhance your outreach. Visit this page for more information on the network and how to join.
NIH encourages grantees who have used or generated HeLa whole genome sequence data that is under controlled access in dbGaP to acknowledge Henrietta Lacks and her family by using this sample language (or something similar) in their publications, presentations, or other public reporting of research using these genomic data:
“The genome sequence described/used in this research was derived from a HeLa cell line. Henrietta Lacks, and the HeLa cell line that was established from her tumor cells without her knowledge or consent in 1951, have made significant contributions to scientific progress and advances in human health. We are grateful to Henrietta Lacks, now deceased, and to her surviving family members for their contributions to biomedical research. This study was reviewed by the NIH HeLa Genome Data Access Working Group (http://acd.od.nih.gov/hlgda.htm). The genomic datasets used for analysis described in this manuscript were obtained from the database of Genotypes and Phenotypes (dbGaP) through dbGaP accession number phs000640.v1.p1.”