In this Issue: 1. American Reinvestment and Recovery Act News 2. Funding Opportunities 3. NIDCR News 4. NIH/HHS News 5. Science Advances
PROGRAM ANNOUNCEMENTS Career Development
Application Receipt Date
James Drummond 301-402-4243
John Kusiak 301-594-7984
R. Dwayne Lunsford301-594-2421
NIDCR Offers Dentist-Scientist Pathway to Independence Award On August 14, NIDCR announced that it is sponsoring a K99/R00 award program for dentist-scientists who possess both a DDS/DMD clinical degree and a PhD (or equivalent) research degree. The award mechanism, which enables promising dentist-scientists to receive both mentored postdoctoral training and independent research support from the same award, is similar to the standard NIH-wide K99/R00 program, but has several unique features. See specific details about the Dentist-Scientist Pathway to Independence Award. Also see the Funding Opportunity Announcement: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-09-256.html Dentists who have used a previous NIDCR-funded K08 or K23 award to earn the PhD degree are also eligible for the dentist-scientist K99/R00 award mechanism. Such applicants must have completed the PhD before applying. All other eligibility requirements and conditions of the K99/R00 mechanism apply. New NIDCR Strategic Plan Now Available OnlineThe NIDCR Strategic Plan 2009-2013 is now available online. In charting its course for the next five years, NIDCR worked closely with its stakeholders to carefully consider the Institute's strengths, opportunities, and resources to derive a plan for how the NIDCR can best map these to the oral health needs of the nation. The Plan is built on four key goals: widening the scope of inquiry, strengthening the research pipeline, fostering novel clinical research avenues, and eliminating oral health disparities. See the new Strategic Plan. Dr. Michael Karin to Speak on Inflammation and MetastasisOn Tuesday, September 15 at 12:30 p.m., Dr. Michael Karin of UC San Diego will speak on “Control of Tumor Promotion and Metastatic Progression by Inflammatory Signaling.” His talk is part of NIDCR’s seminar series “From Basic Research to Therapy—The Latest Frontier." The lecture will be videocast at: http://videocast.nih.gov/ Dr. Karin is a leading authority on signal transduction pathways that regulate gene expression in response to extracellular stimuli. He will describe his recent work on the role of inflammatory processes in the development of tumor metastasis. See additional information about Dr. Karin. Thinking About Applying for a Postdoctoral Position at the NIDCR?Have you ever considered applying for a postdoctoral position at the NIDCR? A new NIDCR web feature offers some real life insight from current Institute postdoctoral fellows. Read the first in what will be a series of Q & A interviews.
Dr. Francis S. Collins is New NIH DirectorOn August 17, Dr. Francis S. Collins was sworn in as the 16th director of the National Institutes of Health. He was nominated to lead the NIH by President Barack Obama on July 8, and was unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate on August 7. Dr. Collins, former Director of the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) from 1993-2008, is a physician-scientist noted for his landmark discoveries of disease genes and his leadership of the Human Genome Project. Under his direction, the Human Genome Project consistently met projected milestones ahead of schedule and under budget. This international project culminated in April 2003 with the completion of a finished sequence of the human DNA instruction book. In addition to his achievements as NHGRI Director, Dr. Collins’ own research laboratory discovered a number of important genes, including those responsible for cystic fibrosis, neurofibromatosis, Huntington's disease, a familial endocrine cancer syndrome, and most recently, genes for adult onset (type 2) diabetes and the gene that causes Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome. Dr. Collins was elected to the Institute of Medicine and the National Academy of Sciences and received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2007. Raynard S. Kington, M.D., Ph.D., who has served as acting NIH director since mid-October, will return to his role as NIH principal deputy director.
NIDCR Director Lawrence Tabak, who was acting NIH deputy director over the past 9 months and worked on the formulation and implementation of the NIH plan to allocate ARRA funds, will continue to help oversee NIH ARRA activities while serving as NIDCR Director. NIH Establishes Guidelines for Human Stem Cell ResearchFinal guidelines establishing the policy and procedures under which NIH will fund human stem cell research were released on July 6. See the new stem cell guidelines. Also see the Status of Applications and Awards under the New NIH Guidelines for Human Stem Cell Research: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-09-123.html On March 9, President Obama issued an Executive Order stating that the Secretary of Health and Human Services, through the Director of NIH, may support and conduct responsible, scientifically worthy human stem cell research, including human embryonic stem cell (hESC) research, to the extent permitted by law. NIH then published in the Federal Register draft guidelines for research involving hESCs and invited public comment. By the end of the comment period on May 26, NIH had received approximately 49,000 comments submitted by patient advocacy groups, scientists and scientific societies, academic institutions, medical organizations, religious organizations, private citizens, and members of Congress. The final guidelines will ensure that NIH-funded human stem cell research is ethically responsible, scientifically worthy, and conducted in accordance with applicable law. NIH Launches the Human Connectome Project to Unravel the Brain’s ConnectionsThe NIH Blueprint for Neuroscience is launching a $30 million project that will use cutting-edge brain imaging technologies to map the circuitry of the healthy adult human brain. By systematically collecting brain imaging data from hundreds of subjects, the Human Connectome Project (HCP) will yield insight into how brain connections underlie brain function and will open up new lines of inquiry for human neuroscience. Investigators have been invited to submit detailed proposals to carry out the HCP, which will be funded at up to $6 million per year for the next five years. Additional details about the Human Connectome Project are available at: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-MH-10-020.html The HCP is the first of three Blueprint Grand Challenges, projects that address major questions and issues in neuroscience research. The other two projects will address targeted drug development for neurological diseases and the neural basis of chronic pain disorders. NIDCR is one of the 16 NIH Institutes, Centers, and Offices participating in the NIH Blueprint for Neuroscience Research. NIH Expands Human Microbiome ProjectThe Human Microbiome Project has awarded more than $42 million to expand its exploration of how the trillions of microscopic organisms that live in or on our bodies affect our health. Launched in 2007 as part of the NIH Roadmap for Medical Research, the Human Microbiome Project is a $140 million, five-year effort that will produce a resource for researchers who are seeking to use information about the microbiome to improve human health. NIDCR is one of the six NIH institutes that manage the project. In the new round of funding, the Human Microbiome Project will support the work of the large-scale DNA sequencing centers that participated in the initial phase of the project. These centers will work together to sequence at least 400 microbial genomes. Another approximately 500 microbial genomes are already completed or in sequencing pipelines and supported by individual NIH institutes and internationally funded projects. These data will then be used to characterize the microbial communities found in samples taken from healthy human volunteers. NIH Expands National Consortium for Transforming Clinical and Translational Research Seven more academic health centers will receive Clinical and Translational Science Awards (CTSAs), bringing the consortium total to 46 member institutions. This national network of medical research institutions is working to accelerate the process that develops laboratory discoveries into treatments for patients, engages communities in clinical research, and trains a new generation of clinical and translational researchers. The consortium was launched in 2006, with new members added in 2007 and 2008. Approximately 60 CTSAs will be connected when the program is fully implemented in 2012. The institutions receiving new CTSA funding are: Medical University of South Carolina; Mount Sinai School of Medicine; New York University School of Medicine; University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences; University of Florida; University of Illinois at Chicago; and University of Texas Medical Branch. The University of Cincinnati also recently became a member of NIH’s Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) consortium.
A fifth funding opportunity announcement for CTSAs is available, which calls for the next round of applications to be submitted by October 14, 2009. Awards are expected to be made in July 2010. The announcement is available at: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-09-004.html Proposals Welcome for NIH Director's Award ProgramsNIH welcomes proposals for 2010 NIH Director's Pioneer Awards and New Innovator Awards. Both programs are part of the NIH Roadmap for Medical Research: http://nihroadmap.nih.gov/ and support exceptionally creative scientists who take highly innovative, potentially high-impact approaches to major challenges in biomedical or behavioral research. Pioneer Awards provide up to $2.5 million in direct costs over 5 years and are open to scientists at any career stage. New Innovator Awards provide up to $1.5 million in direct costs over the same period and are for early stage investigators (ESI) who have not received an NIH regular research (R01) or similar NIH grant. NIH expects to make at least 7 Pioneer Awards and at least 33 New Innovator Awards in September 2010. To continue its strong record of diversity in these programs, NIH especially encourages women and members of groups that are underrepresented in NIH research to apply. The deadline for submitting Pioneer Award applications is October 20, 2009. See the instructions in the RFA: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-09-010.html Also see additional Pioneer Award information. Send questions to: email@example.com The deadline for submitting New Innovator Award applications is October 27, 2009. See the instructions in the RFA: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-09-011.html Also see more New Innovator Award information. Send questions to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Proposals Soon to be Invited for Transformative R01 Program The Transformative R01 (T-R01) supports exceptionally innovative, high risk, original and/or unconventional research projects that have the potential to create or overturn fundamental paradigms. Please check http://nihroadmap.nih.gov/T-R01/ for more information about the program and upcoming funding opportunities. NIH Loan Repayment Programs Available Applications will be accepted for the 2010 NIH Extramural Loan Repayment Program from September 1 - December 1, 2009. The loan repayment programs encourage outstanding health professionals to pursue careers in biomedical, behavioral, social, and clinical research. In return for committing at least two years to conduct qualified research funded by a domestic nonprofit organization or U.S. federal, state, or local government entity, NIH may repay up to $35,000 of an applicant’s qualified student loan debt per year, including most undergraduate, graduate, and medical school loans. Loan repayment benefits are in addition to the institutional salary received for conducting research. For additional information, see the Loan Repayment Program website: http://www.lrp.nih.gov/index.aspx Regina M. Benjamin Nominated as Surgeon GeneralRegina M. Benjamin, MD, MBA, founder and CEO of the Bayou La Batre Rural Health Clinic in Bayou La Batre, Alabama, has been nominated by President Obama to be Surgeon General. She is the immediate past-chair of the Federation of State Medical Boards of the United States and previously served as associate dean for rural health at the University of South Alabama College of Medicine. In 2002, she became president of the Medical Association of the State of Alabama, making her the first African American woman to be president of a State Medical Society in the United States. Dr. Benjamin was previously named by Time Magazine as one of the "Nation's 50 Future Leaders Age 40 and Under." She was also featured in a New York Times article, "Angel in a White Coat", as "Person of the Week" on ABC's World News Tonight with Peter Jennings, and as "Woman of the Year" by CBS This Morning. She received the 2000 National Caring Award which was inspired by Mother Teresa, the papal honor Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice from Pope Benedict XVI, and is a recent recipient of the MacArthur Genius Award.
Diagnostic Technique Shows Promise for Primary Sjögren’s Syndrome Diagnosing primary Sjögren’s syndrome can be problematic. But a new diagnostic technique might one day bring help. Science News in Brief See the following summaries of recent oral health research findings: Possible Biomarkers for Root Resorption in People with Braces Studies suggest at least one in four people may have some erosion of their tooth roots from wearing braces. Find out how researchers are tapping into oral biology to detect the problem sooner. Researchers Shed Light on Photophobia For those with chronic migraines, sensitivity to light is a common symptom. Studying its causes has been problematic for technical reasons, but progress may be on the way. Researchers Test Circuits Underlying Salivary Gland Development NIDCR grantees take a quantitative look at a set of signaling pathways involved in salivary gland development. What they find doesn't align with previous models. Xylitol Syrup Helps to Prevent Childhood Tooth DecayThe natural sweetener xylitol has been shown to prevent tooth decay. Getting enough of it to toddlers to prevent early childhood caries has been a challenge. NIDCR-supported scientists offer a possible solution. Periodontal Disease in Senior Men Not enough is known about the oral health needs of seniors. A new study looks at periodontal disease and older men, and it finds gum disease is more common than previously thought.
National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research
National Institutes of Health
Bethesda, MD 20892-2190