The tragic death of George Floyd at the hands of a Minneapolis police officer and subsequent police shootings throughout our country have drawn worldwide attention to the use of force by the men and women from some of the 18,000 law-enforcement agencies in the United States. A main concern is that use of deadly force is disproportionally applied to Black people. I believe that all lives are sacred. But as you might imagine, the attitudes and demographics of police officers reflect the same attitudes and demographics of America—with both its virtues and faults.
Postbac Poster Day is a yearly tradition marked by the familiar sight of crowded halls of postbacs, all professionally dressed and eager to share their hard work—via colorful posters—with family, friends, and colleagues. This year, however, as the COVID-19 pandemic spread throughout the United States, large gatherings of all kinds were prohibited. But the three-day poster day event took place after all—virtually.
Recently, a colleague from another lab sent a heartfelt goodbye to our all-institute intramural email list. He had just finished his postbaccalaureate fellowship at the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders. His leaving is a public symbol of the many quiet leavings during the pandemic.
Although doing research requires perseverance and tolerating setbacks, the COVID-19 pandemic has sent the world reeling—especially for NIH trainees. Now with the the stress and uncertainties brought on by the pandemic, OITE has vigorously expanded their wellness resources and brought them online.
Like many of us, NCATS postbac Alex Renn has had an unexpected crash course in COVID-19. He presented his team’s work on April 20, 2020, at the NCATS annual postbac poster day event that for the first time went online. His poster described a state-of-the-art screening technique to develop antibodies effective against SARS-CoV-2, the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19.
Read about NIH scientific advances and discoveries by intramural scientists: how the immune system keeps viruses from infecting the brain; less toxic treatment for Burkitt’s lymphoma; biomarkers may predict risk complications after mild traumatic brain injury; new blood test may improve liver cancer screening; and more.