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Characterizing Exposure of Veterans to Agent Orange and Other Herbicides Used in Vietnam: Scientific Considerations Regarding a Request for Proposals for Research Charaterizing Exposure of Veterans to Agent Orange and Other Herbicides Used in Veitnam: Scientific Considerations Regarding a Request for Proposals for Research INTRODUCTION The purpose of this report is to delineate the scientific considerations regarding a request for proposals (RFP) for research characterizing exposure of veterans to Agent Orange and other herbicides used in Vietnam. The National Academy of Sciences' (NAS) Institute of Medicine (IOM), under the scientific supervision of the Committee on the Assessment of Wartime Exposure to Herbicides in Vietnam (hereafter, "the committee"), has been requested by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) to develop an RFP seeking individuals and organizations capable of conducting research to develop one or more historic exposure reconstruction approaches suitable for epidemiologic studies of herbicide exposure among U.S. veterans during the Vietnam War. These approaches would incorporate information from existing databases and other information (e.g., biomarkers of exposure) as detailed below, as well as supplemental information gathered from surveys of military personal, governmental and nongovernmental organizations, and other sources. The Committee on the Assessment of Wartime Exposure to Herbicides in Vietnam was formed in 1996 under a contract with the DVA. In addition to producing this report, the committee will also lead the evaluation of submissions made in response to a formal, complete RFP—a document that will comprise the scientific input; funding amounts and research time frames; and contractual requirements including proposal format, page limitations, and other submission requirements. These other issues will be resolved when the details of the research funding have been finalized. It is expected that the subcontract or subcontracts envisioned by the RFP will be supported by funds provided by the DVA and administered by the IOM under the scientific supervision of the committee. IOM is a part of the NAS, a nonprofit, no-fee institution created by congressional charter in 1863 to be an advisor to the federal government on scientific and technological matters. The NAS performs this role primarily
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