National Institutes of Health

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Sharing data, particularly unique data (data that cannot be replicated), is essential for expedited translation of research results into knowledge, products, and procedures to improve human health.

The NIH endorses the sharing of final research data to serve these and other important scientific goals.

The NIH expects and supports the timely release (no later than the acceptance for publication of the main findings from the final dataset ) and sharing of final research data* from NIH-supported studies for use by other researchers.

*"Final research data is defined as recorded factual material commonly accepted in the scientific community as necessary to validate research findings. It does not include preliminary analyses; drafts of scientific papers; plans for future research; peer reviews; communications with colleagues; physical objects (e.g., laboratory samples, audio or video tapes); trade secrets; commercial information; materials necessary to be held confidential by a researcher until publication in a peer-reviewed journal; information that is protected under the law (e.g., intellectual property); personnel and medical files and similar files, the disclosure of which would constitute an unwarranted invasion of personal privacy; or information that could be used to identify a particular person in a research study. — Data Sharing Regulations/Policy/Guidance Chart for NIH Awards (08/30/2006)