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News from NIDCR (National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, NIH)

4th Edition: October 10, 2003

The NIDCR E-Newsletter provides information about NIH and NIDCR grant, contract and training program policies; new NIDCR funding opportunities; new grant and contract awards; NIH and NIDCR programmatic news; and meetings and events of interest to the research community.

FUNDING OPPORTUNITIES

Program Announcements:

Requests for Applications:

NEW CONCEPT CLEARANCES

The following concept clearances were approved during the October 2 teleconference meeting of the National Advisory Dental and Craniofacial Research Council.  Concepts represent early planning stages for initiatives in which NIDCR seeks to support research in understudied and significant areas of science:

AIDS Related Oral Malignancies and Tumors
Development of in vitro Models of Human Oral Mucosa Relevant to AIDS and Mucosal Infections
Multidisciplinary Approach for Research on Oral Complications of HIV Infection
Regenerative Dental Medicine
Mechanisms of Orofacial Pain: Anatomy, Genomics, Proteomics
Practice-Based Research Network
Clinical Research to Improve Oral Health of Special Needs Populations and the Elderly
Exploratory Grants in Epidemiological, Behavioral/Social Sciences and Oral Health Disparities Research
Epidemiological, Behavioral and Health Disparities Research

NIH NEWS

NIH ANNOUNCES STRATEGY TO ACCELERATE MEDICAL RESEARCH PROGRESS

On September 30, NIH Director Elias Zerhouni announced a series of new initiatives known collectively as the NIH Roadmap for Medical Research.  The initiatives are designed to transform the nation’s medical research capabilities and speed the movement of research discoveries from the bench to the bedside.  The NIH Roadmap focuses on compelling opportunities in three main areas: new pathways to scientific discovery, research teams of the future, and re-engineering the clinical research enterprise.  See the press release about the NIH Roadmap.

NIH OFFERS $35,000 IN ANNUAL STUDENT LOANS REPAYMENT

NIH is now accepting applications to its five Loan Repayment Programs.  December 31, 2003 is the application deadline.  The NIH Loan Repayment Programs can repay up to $35,000 a year of qualified educational debt for health professionals pursuing careers in clinical, pediatric, contraception and infertility, or health disparities research. 

NIDCR NEWS

NEW POLICIES FOR RESEARCH SUPPLEMENT PROGRAMS

NIDCR has developed new Institute policies and procedures for participating in the NIH Research Supplement Program for Underrepresented Minorities; the Research Supplement Program for Individuals with Disabilities; and the Research Supplement Program to Promote Reentry into Biomedical Research Careers.  See the new research supplement policies, as well as a table highlighting eligibility criteria and level of funding

NIDCR ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS FOR DENTAL RESIDENCY PROGRAM

NIDCR is currently accepting applications for its 12-month Residency Program in Dental Public Health.  The program provides a formal training opportunity for dentists planning careers in dental public health, with an emphasis on oral and craniofacial, health-related epidemiologic research.  The application deadline for Program Year 2004-2005 year is November 20, 2003. 

NATIONAL RESEARCH SERVICE AWARD INSTITUTIONAL RESEARCH TRAINING GRANTS (T32) AWARDED

Three new comprehensive T32 programs were awarded, bringing the number of comprehensive programs to 18.  The new programs are located at the University of Texas Health Sciences Center at Houston, the University of California, Los Angeles, and the University of Buffalo. See the complete listing of T32 programs.

PLANNING AWARDS MADE FOR IMPROVEMENT OF RESEARCH INFRASTRUCTURE IN U.S. DENTAL SCHOOLS

Fifteen planning awards for Improvement of Research Infrastructure in U.S. Dental Schools were made with start dates of August 1, 2003. For further details, see: http://www.nidcr.nih.gov/Funding/DentalSchools/FifteenUSDentalSchools.htm

BACTERIAL GENOMIC MICROARRAYS AVAILABLE TO RESEARCHERS

In collaboration with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), NIDCR has established a contract with The Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR) in Gaithersburg, MD to produce and distribute DNA microarray slides for the complete genomes of Porphyromonas gingivalis and Streptococcus mutans.  Researchers will be allowed to request up to 150 slides through a brief, yet competitive, application process.  The slides will allow investigators to determine the expression of genes turned on or off when grown under defined conditions.

NIDCR CONVENES SPECIAL EXPERT PANEL ON PAIN

Over the past year, NIDCR has convened panels of experts to help identify long-range research opportunities in a number of science areas central to its mission.  As part of this initiative, the Institute convened a Panel on Pain Research on May 13.  See the final report of the Panel on Pain Research

NIDCR ISSUES STRATEGIC PLAN FOR FY 03-08

The NIDCR Strategic Plan FY 03-08 is now available on the NIDCR web site.

DR. BRUCE ALBERTS TO DELIVER BARMES LECTURE AT NIH

Dr. Bruce Alberts, President of the National Academy of Sciences, will deliver the 2003 David E. Barmes Global Health Lecture on Monday, November 3 at 3:30 p.m. in the Masur Auditorium on the NIH campus.  The title of Dr. Alberts’ lecture is “Spreading Science Throughout the World: How, Why and When?”  The lecture, which is sponsored by the NIDCR and the Fogarty International Center, is open to interested members of the scientific community. 

NIDCR TO HOST STATE-OF-THE-SCIENCE WORKSHOP ON CLINICAL TRIALS

NIDCR will host a state-of-the-science workshop on Methods for Enhancing the Efficiency of Dental and Oral Health Clinical Trials: Current Status, Future Possibilities, on May 6-7, 2004 on the NIH campus.  The workshop is expected to attract basic and clinical researchers, educators, industry representatives, and regulators.   

SCIENCE ADVANCES

Scientists Report Key Discovery in Organ Development

Scientists Report Important Lead in Studying Possible Association Between Periodontal and Cardiovascular Disease

PERSONNEL NEWS

  • Dr. Story Landis became Director of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) on September 1.  Previously she was scientific director of the NINDS intramural program.

  • Dr. Jeremy Berg will be the new Director of the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS), beginning early in November.  Currently he is director of the Department of Biophysics and Biophysical Chemistry at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

  • Dr. Claude Lenfant, Director of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), retired on August 30.

  • Dr. Kenneth Olden, Director of the National Toxicology Program and the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), has announced his intention to step down from both posts.  He will remain in the positions until a replacement can be found.

  • Dr. Ellie Ehrenfeld, Director of the NIH Center for Scientific Review, stepped down from the position at the end of September.

NIDCR PERSONNEL NEWS

  • NIH is increasingly turning towards the model of doing business in a trans-NIH fashion, the development and implementation of the NIH Roadmap being a prime example.  Dr. Lawrence Tabak, NIDCR Director, has been asked to serve on and chair a growing number of trans-NIH committees, including serving as a founding member of the new NIH Steering Committee.

  • To facilitate these functions, Ms. Wendy Liffers, who served as director of the Office of Science Policy and Analysis (OSPA), has accepted a new position within the Office of the Director of NIDCR as Associate Director for Policy Integration.  In this role, she will serve as a senior advisor and counselor to Dr. Tabak on a wide variety of policy concerns addressing and impacting trans-NIH programmatic and science policy issues, and will help direct various trans-Institute/NIH projects and committees that Dr. Tabak is involved with.

  • Wendy is an attorney whose 18-year federal science policy career has been centered on the development, management and analysis of major biomedical research programs at the NIH.  Her core functions and responsibilities have encompassed operational and strategic science and program planning, program and performance management, and congressional and intergovernmental relations and legislative analysis at the senior-most levels.  Prior to joining the NIDCR in 1998, Wendy served in the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases in a number of positions including Deputy Associate Director for Management and Operations, and Director of their Office of Science Policy and Legislation.  She received a B.S. from Rutgers University, and both her M.A. degree in International Affairs and her Juris Doctor degree from the American University.  While in law school, she was elected to the editorial board of the American University Law Review.  Wendy has been admitted to practice before the Bars in New Jersey, Maryland, the District of Columbia, and the Supreme Court of the United States.

  • Dr. Isabel Garcia has agreed to serve as the acting director of the Office of Science Policy and Analysis (OSPA).  She is currently the Special Assistant for Science Transfer, directing activities to promote science-based practice and coordinates the implementation of the NIDCR health disparities plan.  Dr. Garcia also is the co-director of the NIDCR Dental Public Health Residency. She recently led the update of the NIDCR Strategic Plan and will be overseeing its implementation as part of her new role as the acting director of OSPA.  Before joining the NIDCR in 1995, Dr. Garcia was a Health Scientist Administrator at the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.  She earned a D.D.S. from the Medical College of Virginia, and a Master in Public Health and a Certificate in Dental Public Health from the University of Michigan.  She is a Diplomate of the American Board of Dental Public Health, one of the nine specialties in dentistry, and a Captain in the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps.  Prior to her career in the Public Health Service, she worked for several years in the private sector as a clinician, and held two state-level health management positions—in Virginia as director of a school-based program, and in Ohio as director of program research and evaluation.  Dr. Garcia is active among U.S. professional associations and has served as an elected member of the Executive Council of the American Association of Public Health Dentistry and on the Oral Health Section of the American Public Health Association.  She was recently elected to serve on the American Board of Dental Public Health.

  • Dr. Thomas Hart will begin his appointment in October as NIDCR’s Clinical Director, Division of Intramural Research. Prior to joining the NIDCR, Dr. Hart was Director of Clinical Research, University of Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine and Director of the Center for Craniofacial and Dental Genetics.  He also was an associate professor in the Department of Genetics and the Department of Oral Biology at the University of Pittsburgh.

  • Dr. Margo Adesanya, director of the Clinical Trials and Patient-Oriented Research Program, Division of Population and Health Promotion Sciences, resigned in July after 11 years with the NIDCR. Recruitment to replace her is under way.

  • It is with great sadness that we report that Dr. Herschel Horowitz, a world-renowned dental caries researcher who led the clinical trials program of the National Caries Program and its successor program at the Institute from 1971-1985, died August 10.  Dr. Horowitz’ investigations established the foundation for many caries prevention public health programs.  His research focused on the effectiveness of fluoride toothpastes and mouthrinses, fluoride gels, dental sealants, water fluoridation, and multiple preventive measures.  After retiring from the NIDCR, he served as a consultant to numerous organizations, including the American Dental Association’s National Fluoridation Advisory Committee.  The NIDCR is holding a scientific memorial symposium in his honor on December 17, 2003 from 1:00-5:30 p.m. in Wilson Hall (Building 1) on the NIH campus.

National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research
National Institutes of Health
Bethesda, MD 20892-2190
301-496-4261

National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research   National Institutes of Health (NIH)   Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)   USA.gov