“We live in a dangerous world, constantly bombarded with bacteria, viruses, fungi, or parasites,” said Ronald Germain at the annual G. Burroughs Mider Lecture, held in December. “How does the immune system protect against adverse unpredictable disease entities at unanticipated sites in the body?”
NIH Clinical Center Course Reaches Thousands Around the World
BY DONOVAN KUEHN, CC
CREDIT: PATRICIA PIRINGER, NIH CLINCAL CENTER
International Reach: The 2015–2016 “Introduction to the Principles and Practice of Clinical Research” course has 26 international participants: Argentina, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Egypt, Greece, Guinea, India, Jordan, Kenya, Liberia, Mexico, Mongolia, Morocco, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Qatar, South Korea, Switzerland, Syria, Taiwan, and the United Arab Emirates.
Celebrating its 20th anniversary, the course “Introduction to the Principles and Practice of Clinical Research” (IPPCR) has an impressive title and focuses on a clear goal: providing instruction on the basics of high-quality, safe, ethical, and efficiently conducted clinical research.
I have often used this space to remind the NIH intramural community of the important role that the NIH intramural program plays in addressing urgent and compelling issues related to the public health. Three recent examples are worthy illustrations.
As the new director of the NCATS Stem Cell Translation Laboratory, Ilyas Singec is developing new resources and strategies that scientists can use to accelerate the translation of iPSC research into cell therapies and drug discovery.
NHGRI Seminar Series Reflects on the Human Genome Project
BY BRANDON LEVY, NIMH
“The Human Genome Project was a remarkable scientific endeavor. It reshaped biomedical research and paved the way for clinical advances that are already impacting patients’ lives,” said National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) Director Eric Green at the launch of a new seminar series that commemorates the 25th anniversary of the launch of the Human Genome Project.
Bob Blakesley, Director of the NISC Sequencing Group, Retires
BY JEANNINE MJOSETH, NHGRI
Genomics research is a quintessential team science. Contributing to each project are those who identify the scientific questions, collect biological samples, purify and sequence the DNA, and analyze the resulting data. The NIH lost a key member of its broader genomics team with recent retirement of Robert Blakesley, who was the director of the sequencing group at the NIH Intramural Sequencing Center.
Intramural research highlights: New inflammation treatment; new pathway for vaccine research; boosting social memory; poverty and childhood risk of neurological impairment; dizziness and balance problems common in kids; and marijuana-like brain chemical may affect cocaine addiction.
NEWS FROM AND ABOUT THE SCIENTIFIC INTERESTS GROUPS
Periodontitis: A Microbial-Driven Inflammatory Disease
BY HEBA DIAB, NHLBI
A mouth microbiome that’s out of whack can lead to serious health problems such as the chronic inflammatory disease periodontitis, which causes inflammation that damages gum tissue and can lead to tooth loss. NIDCR Clinical Investigator Niki Moutsopoulos described her research on periodontitis at an Inflammatory Disease SIG seminar.
The quest to solve the world’s most critical biomedical questions is a global venture that has sparked interactions among researchers around the world. Few other institutions make this more evident than the NIH, where nearly half of all postdoctoral fellows are international researchers.