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I am Intramural Blog

Little Fish in a Big Pond Reveal New Answers to Old Questions

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Dr. Eric Horstick in the lab

Studying the neural control of behavior is a challenge. Researchers must consider an animal’s environment, past experiences, and motivations. Work in relatively simple organisms, for example the invertebrate C. elegans, has teased apart the neural circuitry of highly stereotyped behaviors, like foraging. But in mammals, very little is known, “and that’s surprising given just how important behaviors like this are,” said Dr. Eric Horstick, who studies the molecular mechanisms underlying animal behavior.

Cool Videos: Looking Inside Living Cells

Monday, February 27, 2017

Roberto Weigert is a cell biologist who specializes in intravital microscopy (IVM), an extremely high-resolution imaging tool that traces its origins to the 19th century. What’s unique about IVM is its phenomenal resolution can be used in living animals, allowing researchers to watch biological processes unfold in organs under real physiological conditions and in real time.

Four NIH IRP Researchers Elected to National Academy of Medicine

Monday, October 24, 2016

This year, members of the National Academy of Medicine elected four NIH Intramural researchers to their ranks, one of the highest honors in science. Learn a bit about each of their research and follow the links to their IRP profiles for more information.

Mitochondrial DNA Replication and Inheritance

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Dr. Hong Xu's team’s expertise in mitochondrial DNA genetics, along with a strong mitochondrial biology research group in the IRP, allowed them to solve the fundamental biological question of how organisms are able to stop the accumulation of mitochondrial DNA mutations from being passed on to future generations.

Why Use Zebrafish to Study Human Diseases?

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Scientists use a variety of laboratory techniques to investigate the genetic cause of human diseases. While mice and rats have been common choices for modeling human diseases in the past, the use of zebrafish is rapidly gaining popularity. Does this surprise you? Let me explain.

Epigenetics in Cancer Individualizes Environmental and Hereditary Risks

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

You may already know that diet, obesity, exposure to the sun, radiation, and hormones are just a few of the many risk factors associated with cancer diagnoses. But, do you know about other risk factors, especially those playing out through epigenetics, the molecular relationship between the environment and our DNA? Read more...

An Inspiration for Others – Eli’s Story

Monday, April 25, 2016

Six months after turning two, Eli Palmer still wasn’t walking, and his parents, Julie and Seth, had begun to worry. But they figured their fourth child was growing at his own pace and would soon catch up.

NIH’s Undiagnosed Diseases Program Gives 6-year-old Hope

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Annaleise Knight is an active, outgoing six-year-old. In her hometown of Grayslake, Illinois, she loves riding her bike, swimming, taking ballet and tap lessons, and playing outside on the swings and trampoline with her three siblings, Nicholas, 16, Braden, 7, and Catherine, 4. Although Annaleise has an exuberant personality, she did not always have the energy and strength to do her favorite activities.

Breast Cancer Awareness: How the IRP Recognizes October

Saturday, October 31, 2015

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness month, four weeks out of the year dedicated to bringing visibility and awareness to research in support of one of the most widespread and devastating cancers in existence.

Inspirations in Science and Medicine

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

You never know when inspiration will strike. I still remember the day that Dr. Francis Collins came to visit my high school genetics class. At that time, Dr. Collins was the director of the Human Genome Project, an international research program aimed at uncovering the genetic building blocks essential for human life. Imagine our recent excitement when Dr. Collins, now Director of the NIH, specially attended a reception for clinical fellows at the Clinical Center.