The SIG Beat


New SIG: Sexual and Gender Minority Health Scientific Interest Group (SGM Health SIG)

The recently established SGM Health Scientific Interest Group (SGM Health SIG) is interested in supporting a range of biomedical, clinical, behavioral, and social science research to advance the health of all sexual and gender minority (SGM) populations, with a specific interest in the disease areas and health conditions that affect these individuals.

The SIG will 1) connect individuals trained in different scientific disciplines engaged or interested in conducting SGM health research; 2) provide intramural researchers and trainees a venue to share and receive feedback on their research and discuss publications related to SGM health; and 3) provide opportunities for career development, networking, and community engagement.

SGM populations include but are not limited to individuals who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, asexual, transgender, Two-Spirit, queer, and/or intersex; individuals with same-sex or -gender attractions or behaviors and those with a difference in sex development; and those who do not self-identify with one of these terms but whose sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or reproductive development is characterized by nonbinary constructs (not identifying as either man or a woman) of sexual orientation, gender, and/or sex.

The SGM Health SIG is a partnership among the NIH institutes, centers, and offices, the Intramural Research Program (IRP), and the Sexual and Gender Minority Research Office (SGMRO) in the Office of the Director. While regular activities for this SIG will be led by members of the IRP, the SGMRO will provide guidance by selecting and inviting extramural scientists to present scientific lectures to the group. SGMRO will also assist IRP researchers leverage resources to better engage in SGM health research and help identify mentors for trainees.

The SGM Health SIG is open to all (including NIH intramural and extramural investigators, as well as people from other federal agencies and area universities). The SIG will have regularly scheduled meetings every two to three months and hold an annual retreat. Meetings will feature presentations by invited NIH staff, extramural researchers, and SIG members, and discussions about research ideas and relevant publications. For more information go to To join the SGMHEALTH_SIG LISTSERV email list, which will share meeting announcements and other information, go to and click the “Subscribe or Unsubscribe” link in the right sidebar. For questions, contact the chair Erik Rodriquez (

Scientific Interest Groups

NIH Scientific Interest Groups (SIGs) are assemblies of scientists with common research interests. These groups engage with their members via LISTSERVs; sponsor symposia, poster sessions and lectures; offer mentoring and career guidance for junior scientists; help researchers share the latest techniques and information; act as informal advisors to the Deputy Director of Intramural Research (DDIR); provide advice for the annual NIH Research Festival; and serve as hosts for the Wednesday Afternoon Lecture Series. Most of these groups welcome interested NIH and non-NIH scientists. For more information and a list of SIGs, go to