Evolutionary Biologist and Cell Biologist Share Their Views
Four billion years ago, life arose on Earth from nonliving matter. About two billion years later, more complex and multicellular life forms began to emerge. Two scientists— evolutionary biologist Nick Lane and cellular biologist Jennifer Lippincott-Schwartz—shared their theories on the origin of life.
Anna Huttenlocher Presents Research on Inflammation Resolution and Wound Repair
The Wednesday Afternoon Lecture Series (WALS) has been videocast-only since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic more than two years ago. But on April 6, 2022, NIH welcomed Anna Huttenlocher, from the University of Wisconsin at Madison, as the first in-person WALS presenter since March 4, 2020.
My Time as Deputy Director for Intramural Research: What the Future Holds
I’m excited that the next Deputy Director for Intramural Research (DDIR) will bring new energy to NIH’s intramural research program (IRP). In preparation for the transition to new leadership—including a new NIH Director—I have worked closely with NIH scientific and clinical directors to identify four areas of challenges and opportunities that will need to be addressed.
NIDDK Senior Investigator John Hanover has dedicated nearly 40 years to research in glycoscience—the study of glycans, sugar molecules that cloak the surface of all cells and festoon many proteins, lipids, and other molecules. Glycans are inextricably linked to nearly every facet of cellular biology and implicated in conditions from cancer to neurodegenerative diseases and type 2 diabetes.
The term “glycobiology” indicates the blending of carbohydrate chemistry and biochemistry, with an understanding of glycans at the cellular and molecular level. Glycans, also known as saccharides and carbohydrates, are sugar molecules that cloak the surface of all cells and festoon many proteins, lipids, and other molecules. Glycans are inextricably linked to nearly every facet of cellular biology and implicated in conditions from cancer to neurodegenerative diseases and type 2 diabetes. NIH has a rich history of glycobiology research. Here are some of the early and current glycobiology investigators. This list is by no means comprehensive.
Lauren Porter’s Research on Fold-switching Proteins
“Fold-switching proteins are like Transformers, like Optimus Prime,” said Stadtman Tenure-Track Investigator Lauren Porter, referring to the hero of the science fiction franchise of shapeshifting humanlike robots. “Sometimes he’s a robot, and sometimes he turns into a car. He uses both of his structures and both of his functions to fight crime.” Similarly, the proteins she studies have multiple stable structures and functions.
Read about NIH scientific advances and discoveries by intramural scientists: complete human genome sequenced; hydration may reduce long-term cardiac risk; peripheral vision attention not driven by tiny eye movements; targeting fat-cell signaling may help treat metabolic disease; newly discovered molecular pathway in two neurodegenerative disorders; and machine learning successfully identifies ALS subtypes.
Since the beginning of the AIDS epidemic in the 1980s, scientists at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) have made several pivotal discoveries in HIV and AIDS and AIDS-associated cancers. Four decades later, NCI senior investigator Genoveffa Franchini is close to finding a vaccine approach to prevent HIV infection and AIDS.
Many fellows at the NIH share an interest in developing innovative new drug targets, diagnostics, therapies, and technologies and finding ways to move them from the bench to the bedside. But what does it take to bring innovations into the public realm? The answer often lies in technology transfer.
Two soon-to-be demolished buildings—the Biologics Standards Laboratory Building (Building 29) and the Biologics Standards Laboratory Annex (Building 29A)—are nationally significant to the history of medicine and public health. They will live on in a new website hosted by the Office of NIH History and Stetten Museum.
News From and About the Scientific Interest Groups
Two new SIGS: The Consciousness Research Interest Group will provide a platform to discuss, discover, collaborate, and stimulate the research of the science of consciousness; the Metastasis Scientific Interest Group will support metastasis-related research at the NIH.