News & Events

NIAMS Update September 2011

NIAMS - National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases
Update - An online resource for the NIAMS Coalition, Council, and Colleague
September 22, 2011
Introduction
The NIAMS Update is a monthly digest published for those interested in the latest scientific news and resources on diseases of the bones, joints, muscles, and skin. We encourage further dissemination of this resource.
Contact Information

Office of Communications and Public Liaison
niamsinfo@mail.nih.gov

Anita Linde, M.P.P.
Acting Director

Melanie M. Martinez, M.P.A.
Public Liaison Officer

Trish Reynolds, R.N., M.S.
Media Liaison

Spotlight
NIH DIRECTOR'S PIONEER AWARD logo

2012 NIH Director's Pioneer and New Innovator Awards Programs: The NIH Welcomes Proposals
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) welcomes proposals for the 2012 NIH Director's Pioneer Awards and New Innovator Awards, which recognize innovative approaches to major challenges in biomedical or behavioral research. The NIH expects to make at least 7 Pioneer Awards and at least 33 New Innovator Awards in summer 2012. To continue its strong record of diversity in these programs, the NIH especially encourages women and members of groups that are underrepresented in NIH research to apply.

Pioneer Awards provide funding for up to $2.5 million in direct costs over 5 years. They are open to scientists at any career stage. New Innovator Awards provide funding for up to $1.5 million in direct costs over 5 years. They are open to early career stage investigators, defined as those who have not received an NIH R01 or similar grant and are within 10 years of completing their terminal research degree or medical residency.

The deadline for submitting Pioneer Award applications is October 7, 2011. For more information, see the instructions in the Funding Opportunity Announcement RFA-RM-11-004. Please send questions to pioneer@nih.gov.

The deadline for submitting New Innovator Award applications is October 14, 2011. For more information, see the instructions in the Funding Opportunity Announcement RFA-RM-11-005. Please send questions to newinnovator@nih.gov.

NIH Loan Repayment Program Application Cycle Is Open
The NIH encourages outstanding health professionals to pursue careers in biomedical, behavioral, social and clinical research. If you commit at least two years to conducting qualified research funded by a domestic nonprofit organization or United States federal, state or local government entity, the NIH may repay up to $35,000 of your qualified student loan debt per year, including most undergraduate, graduate and medical school loans. Loan repayment benefits are in addition to the institutional salary you receive for your research.

For more information about your eligibility or how to apply, visit the NIH Loan Repayment Program website.


News

Dlx3 Protein Linked to Skin Inflammation
A team of scientists at the NIAMS, in collaboration with researchers at the National Cancer Institute, have discovered that deletion of a gene called Distal-less 3 (Dlx3) in mice is associated with the development of a type of skin inflammation that involves the cell-signaling molecule, interleukin-17. Their findings were published in the July 12 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Latest Findings from the Spine Patient Outcomes Research Trial
Spinal surgery improves leg pain more than low back pain, and people with diabetes tend to experience less relief from spinal surgery than do those without diabetes. These are two of the most recent key findings of the Spine Patient Outcomes Research Trial (SPORT), the first comprehensive study to look at the effectiveness of different treatments for low back pain and pain that radiates down a patient's leg.

Study Further Elucidates Role of Arthritis in Fracture Risk
Using data from the Women's Health Initiative, researchers supported by the NIAMS have improved the understanding of the association between arthritis and the risk of broken bones (fractures). Their findings underscore the need for bone health strategies in people with arthritis, including osteoarthritis—a condition that was once considered to be "protective" against fractures.

Amber Grace Amber Grace

For Future Pharmacist, Research Provides an Opportunity to Discover Innovative Aspects of Science
Amber Grace is a recent graduate of Tuskegee University in Montgomery, Alabama, where she majored in chemistry. She is one of 16 young scientists-in-training selected to participate in the NIH Academy, a post baccalaureate biomedical research program for recent college graduates with an interest in domestic health disparities, differences in the frequency or severity of diseases and other adverse health conditions among populations in the United States. Academy members spend one or two years working side by side with NIH investigators exclusively on biomedical research. They also complete a curriculum that combines the study of health disparities with career and professional development workshops. During their stay at the NIH, Academy members are expected to apply to graduate or professional (medical/dental/pharmacy) school.

An accomplished student, Grace received an award for Outstanding Poster Presentation at the Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students in Microbiology in fall 2010, and won 1st place in the Emerging Researchers National Conference for Undergraduate Oral Presentation in Biological Sciences in the Microbiology/Genes category in February 2011. In her interview, Grace discusses her student "career" at the NIAMS (in summer 2010, she interned in the Molecular Immunology and Inflammation lab), her passion for health disparities research and what inspired her interest in science starting at age 12.

The NIH Appoints Director of Intramural Center for Regenerative Medicine
NIH Director Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D., announced the appointment of Mahendra S. Rao, M.D., Ph.D., as the director for the new NIH Intramural Center for Regenerative Medicine (NIH-CRM). The NIH-CRM is an initiative to create a world-class center of excellence in stem cell technology on the NIH campus, including induced pluripotent stem cells, which can have applications in many systems and organs of the body. This is an initiative of the NIH Common Fund and will be administered by the NIAMS.

The HHS Tightens Financial Conflict of Interest Rules for Researchers: Increased Reporting, Transparency to Ensure Scientific Objectivity and Integrity
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued an updated Final Rule on conflict of interest, providing a framework for identifying, managing and ultimately avoiding investigators' financial conflicts of interest. Staff from the NIH worked with others in the HHS to revise the 1995 regulations to update and enhance the objectivity and integrity of the research process.

The NIH Launches Medical Research Scholars Program
A new Medical Research Scholars Program for medical and dental students will begin in September 2012 in Bethesda, Maryland, the NIH has announced. The program will offer research experiences with intramural investigators from across the NIH in basic science laboratories, and in clinical and translational research conducted at the NIH Clinical Center, the world's largest hospital dedicated to patient-oriented research.


Meetings and Events

NIAMS Advisory Council Meeting
The NIAMS Advisory Council Meeting will be held September 27, 2011, in Building 31, 6th floor, C Wing, Conference Room 6, NIH Campus.

The Jak-STAT Pathway: 20 Years from Discovery to Drugs
The NIAMS will host a symposium, "The Jak-STAT Pathway: Twenty Years from Discovery to Drugs," from September 22 to 24, 2011, at the Natcher Conference Center, NIH Campus.

NIH holds the patent for targeting Janus kinases and discovering novel immunosuppressive agents. It has now been 20 years since the discovery of the Jak-STAT pathway. Industry scientists will be present to speak and present their most recent work; this meeting will focus on the translational advances that have arisen with the basic discoveries of this important Jak-STAT pathway.

NIH Wednesday Afternoon Lecture Series
The NIH's Wednesday Afternoon Lecture Series offers weekly lectures every Wednesday at 3 p.m. in Masur Auditorium, Building 10, NIH Campus. Renowned scientists from around the globe present research on a variety of topics. The lectures are Continuing Medical Education-certified lectures, open to the public and available live via webcast.

Upcoming lecture:
September 28, 2011
Dr. Antonios G. Mikos
"Biomaterials for Tissue Engineering"

2012 International Human Microbiome Congress
World-leading scientists in Human Microbiome research will discuss new findings, their impacts and future trends.

March 19 to 21, 2012
Paris, France
Obtain more information and register.


Publications

Fibrous Dysplasia Overview
This new fact sheet contains information about fibrous dysplasia. It describes what it is, who gets it and how it is diagnosed and treated. There is also information about research on fibrous dysplasia and contact information for additional resources.

NIH Research Matters
NIH Research Matters is a review of NIH research from the Office of Communications and Public Liaison, Office of the Director, NIH.

NIH Public Bulletin
Read about the latest public events, activities and health information resources from the NIH in the latest issue of the NIH Public Bulletin.

NIH News in Health
Read practical health information in NIH News in Health, which is reviewed by the NIH's medical experts and is based on research conducted either by the NIH's own scientists or by our grantees at universities and medical schools around the country.


Funding Announcements
NIH Common Fund Initiative Announcements

Human Heredity and Health in Africa (H3Africa): Collaborative Centers (U54)
(RFA-RM-11-008)
Letters of Intent Receipt Date: September 30, 2011
Application Receipt Date: December 2, 2011

Human Health and Heredity in Africa (H3Africa): Research Grants (U01)
(RFA-RM-11-009)
Letters of Intent Receipt Date: November 2, 2011
Application Receipt Date: December 2, 2011

Human Heredity and Health in Africa (H3Africa): Bioinformatics Network (U41)
(RFA-RM-11-010)
Letters of Intent Receipt Date: November 2, 2011
Application Receipt Date: December 2, 2011

Economic Research on Incentives for Efficient Use of Preventive Services (R01)
(RFA-RM-11-012)
Letters of Intent Receipt Date: October 15, 2011
Application Receipt Date: November 15, 2011

Notice of Addition of Eligibility Criterion for the 2012 NIH Director's New Innovator Award Program (RFA-RM-11-005)
(NOT-RM-11-022)

Other Research Announcements

Health Promotion for Children With Physical Disabilities Through Physical Activity and Diet: Developing An Evidence Base (R21)
(PAR-11-284)
Letters of Intent Receipt Date: 30 days prior to the applicable receipt date
Application Receipt Dates: Multiple Dates—See Announcement
Standard dates apply

Health Promotion for Children With Physical Disabilities Through Physical Activity and Diet: Developing An Evidence Base (R01)
(PAR-11-288)
Letters of Intent Receipt Date: 30 days prior to the applicable receipt date
Application Receipt Dates: Multiple Dates—See Announcement
Standard dates apply

Request for Information (RFI): Input into the Deliberations of the Advisory Committee to the NIH Director Working Group on the Future Biomedical Research Workforce
(NOT-OD-11-106)

Notice of Clarification for RFA-OD-11-003 Specialized Centers of Research (SCOR) on Sex Differences (P50)
(NOT-OD-11-107)

Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Program Contract Solicitation (PHS 2012-1) Now Available
(NOT-OD-11-108)

Issuance of the Final Rule—Responsibility of Applicants for Promoting Objectivity in Research for which Public Health Service Funding Is Sought and Responsible Prospective Contractors
(NOT-OD-11-109)

Clarification to Notice NOT-OD-11-106: Request for Information (RFI): Input into the Deliberations of the Advisory Committee to the NIH Director Working Group on the Future Biomedical Research Workforce
(NOT-OD-11-114)

Notice of Correction for PA-11-148 Nanoscience and Nanotechnology in Biology and Medicine (R01)
(NOT-EB-11-007)

Extension of Receipt Date for RFA-OD-11-002 Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women’s Health (K12) and Clarification of Specialized Program Information
(NOT-HD-11-019)

Updates to Section IV, Specialized Program Information RFA-OD-11-002 Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women’s Health (K12)
(NOT-HD-11-020)

If you would like to review information about funding opportunities more frequently than our monthly updates allow, see the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts, the primary source for information about NIH funding opportunities. You can also request a weekly Table of Contents from the NIH Guide.