Sleep Assessment

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Dana Wolff-Hughes, Ph.D.
Program Director, Risk Factor Assessment Branch


Sleep plays an essential role in human health and well-being. Research efforts are needed to better understand the relationship between sleep, cancer risk, and other cancer-related outcomes. Accurate assessments of sleep quantity, quality, timing, and context are needed to further this research.

The Epidemiology and Genomics Research Program (EGRP) supports the collection of sleep data in existing and planned surveys in an attempt to develop more complete assessments of individuals’ sleep patterns. Additionally, EGRP’s goals in this area include to:

  • Assess sleep more comprehensively, including sleep timing, quantity, and quality, and contextual factors, over long time periods;
  • Improve the analytic procedures used to process sleep data;
  • Improve the validity and reliability of sleep assessment instruments in various populations; and
  • Improve our understanding of the role of sleep in promoting health in both the general population and among cancer survivors.

Funding Opportunities

NCI-sponsored Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOAs) related to sleep assessment include:

  • Smart Health and Biomedical Research in the Era of Artificial Intelligence and Advanced Data Science - expires November 2022

There are currently no additional NCI funding opportunity announcements (FOAs) focused on sleep assessment research; however, NCI’s Epidemiology and Genomics Research Program (EGRP) encourages investigator-initiated grant applications on sleep assessment topics.

EGRP also joins with other NCI Divisions, and other components of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to fund grant applications submitted in response to FOAs.

View All Cancer Control Funding Opportunities

Research Resources

Assessment Tools

  • Automated Self-Administered 24-Hour (ASA24) Dietary Assessment Tool’s Sleep Module
    ASA24 is a freely available web-based tool for epidemiologic, interventional, behavioral, or clinical research from NCI that enables multiple automatically coded self-administered 24-hour recalls and food records. The ASA24 system will have an optional sleep module that will be available in late 2021. The sleep module can  be used to examine the relationship between diet,  sleep, and timing of eating occasions, including intermittent fasting.
  • The NIH Common Data Elements (CDE) Repository contains sleep-related data elements. The CDE Repository is designed to provide access to data element definitions recommended or required by NIH Institutes and Centers and other organizations for use in research and for other purposes.
  • PhenX ToolkitExternal Web Site Policy
    This toolkit, supported by NIH funding, is a catalogue of recommended, standard measures of phenotypes and environmental exposures, including sleep measures, for use in biomedical research.

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