Inclusion of both sexes in research design - Call for input

Closed 24 Apr 2022

Opened 3 Mar 2022


MRC is committed to funding the best quality medical research, which is relevant to and benefits the whole of society.

MRC will soon expect the sex of animals, tissues, and cells to be clearly specified and explained as part of the experimental design of grant applications.

MRC will expect both sexes of animals, tissues and (non-immortalised) cells to be used by default in research proposals. MRC will continue to fund research proposals based on the assessment of the quality of the research and value for money in terms of the resources requested, including whether or not the funds requested are essential and adequate for the work and justified by the importance and scientific potential of the research. 

MRC may still fund single-sex studies where there is strong justification in the research proposal for doing so. In cases of acutely scarce resources, purely molecular interactions or single sex mechanisms or diseases, the use of a single sex is likely to be appropriate.

These expectations will start to apply later in 2022 and from 2023.

Why your views matter

MRC is committed to communication and engagement with the research community. MRC would like to get your views in order to understand how best to implement these changes, and what help researchers and research support teams might need in order to meet the new expectations.


  • Research Community


  • Equality, Diversity and Inclusion