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BY SARA CROCOLL, PRESIDENTIAL MANAGEMENT FELLOW, NIAID
It’s not quite a Star Trek replicator, but it comes close: a three-dimensional (3-D) printer. The fictional replicator rearranges subatomic particles to make food, water, spare parts, and more. The very real 3-D printer translates digital computer files into custom laboratory equipment as well as models of biomolecules, cells, organisms, and anatomical features. Using an additive manufacturing process, the printer spits out successive thin layers of material onto a platform until an object is formed.
BY REBECCA BAKER (NIAID) AND LAURA S. CARTER
Luca Gattinoni (NCI) took his “first steps into science” as a toddler in the NIH Child Care Center when his parents were Visiting Fellows at NIH. Physicist Kandice Tanner (NCI) is drawn to motion, whether it’s from tumor cells migrating into new tissues or her own body hurtling through space while she’s skydiving. Developmental biologist Todd Macfarlan (NICHD) is intrigued with how viruses “are so intimately intertwined with our own evolution as a species.” Indeed, all 11 members of the 2011–2012 cycle of Earl Stadtman Tenure-Track Investigators have a story to tell.
BY HANK GRASSO AND MICHELE LYONS, OFFICE OF NIH HISTORY
When Joseph “Ed” Rall’s daughter, Priscilla Rall, decided to share her father’s history with the NIH Stetten Museum and the National Library of Medicine (NLM), she welcomed representatives from both to her home and amazed them with her family’s extensive historical collections. Pia Rall had painstakingly collected, organized, and preserved the evidence of her father’s life and work—his legacy—and was interested in returning some of these resources to NIH so that his voice would always be found there. Ed Rall did groundbreaking research on the thyroid, founded one of the world’s leading thyroid centers at NIH, and was an inspirational force in NIH’s intramural program.
BY MICHAEL GOTTESMAN, DDIR
“The times they are a-changin’.” The conduct of science is evolving even though resources are restricted; barriers to turning innovative ideas into reality keep springing up while being torn down elsewhere. We all know about the many contributions that the intramural research program (IRP) has made to modern biomedical research (and I hope you all have your “elevator speech” ready in case someone challenges you on this), but how can we best mold the future to assure its continued success?
NIH researchers have identified gene variants that cause a rare syndrome of sporadic fevers, skin rashes, and recurring strokes, beginning early in childhood, that may also provide clues to treating stroke in general. Read about that discovery and more.
BY SARA CROCOLL, PRESIDENTIAL MANAGEMENT FELLOW, NIAID
Ever wonder why there’s a huge white anchor at the intersection of Center and South Drives on NIH’s Bethesda campus? The Centennial Anchor, so named for the 100th anniversary of NIH’s founding, symbolizes the maritime origins of the Public Health Service and NIH. Originally from a Coast Guard cutter, the anchor rested for many years in front of the Staten Island Marine Hospital (Staten Island, N.Y.), where the NIH began in 1887 as the Hygienic Laboratory.
BY HELENE BLANCHARD, NIA
Julie Makani, a Tanzanian investigator, just completed a three-month sabbatical at NIH as part of an effort to integrate Western and African knowledge to improve the care of people with sickle-cell disease (SCD). Makani first came to NIH on February 13, 2013, to give a talk for the Wednesday Afternoon Lecture Series (WALS) on “Sickle Cell Disease: What Can Africa Contribute?” in which she talked about leveraging existing resources in Africa and the United States to develop programs that integrate health care, education, and research.
BY JONATHAN WIEST, DIRECTOR, CENTER FOR CANCER TRAINING, NCI
So what is mentoring? This is a very important and difficult question and one that is often answered with, “We know it when we see it.” This isn’t very satisfying to those looking for good mentoring. If we can’t describe it, measure it, or delineate it, then how can we find it?
BY ALAN N. SCHECHTER, NIDDK
André Van Steirteghem is one of the leaders in the field of in vitro fertilization (IVF) and now an emeritus professor of embryology and reproductive biology at Vrije Universiteit (the Free University) in Brussels. In December 2013, he came to NIH to deliver a lecture in which he recounted his work in developing and leading the renowned IVF program at the university’s medical school since the early 1980s. His program has been responsible for about 20,000 successful pregnancies. In addition, André pioneered the Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI) technique in which a single sperm is injected directly into an egg.
BY CHRIS PALMER, NCI
Are genes patentable? In June 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court, ruling on the case Association for Molecular Pathology v. Myriad Genetics, Inc., answered that question with a resounding “No.”
BY JENNIFER LEVITHAN AND STACIE RAPPAPORT, OD
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) will be moving to new human resources (HR) systems that will replace myPay, the Integrated Time and Attendance System (ITAS), and Capital HR (EHRP) with interconnected systems. HHS is calling this effort the HR Modernization Program, also referred to as the National Finance Center (NFC) Migration. HHS anticipates the systems migration will occur in the fall of 2015.