News & Events

Shorttakes

January 2008 (historical)

A compilation of news from the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS). Published three times a year. Just scan these "shorttakes" for information on what's happening at NIAMS, or access the complete articles for viewing or use in your own newsletter or other publication.

From the Director . . .

Since the Institute's inception more than 20 years ago, the NIAMS Coalition has played a vital role as a liaison among the researchers that NIAMS funds, the patients who benefit from our research investments, Congress, and the general public. This year promises to be an exciting time for the NIAMS Coalition. The Arthritis Foundation and the National Psoriasis Foundation have assumed a new role in leading the efforts of the Coalition, building upon the excellent work of the Society for Investigative Dermatology which led the group for the last two years.

In December, the Institute invited representatives from the Coalition to attend the first NIAMS Coalition Outreach Day. During this event, participants had the opportunity to expand their knowledge of NIAMS programs, and network with fellow Coalition members and discuss common goals. Additionally, senior NIAMS scientific staff briefed representatives from nearly 40 Coalition groups about research progress at the Institute.

Virtually every household in America is affected in some way by diseases of the bones, joints, muscles, and skin. The NIAMS portfolio includes conditions that are both common and rare, that affect individuals across the life span, and that have a major impact on quality of life and disability. People of all racial and ethnic backgrounds, and those of every economic strata, are affected. And in terms of both prevalence and severity, women and minorities are often disproportionately afflicted.

Given the wide variety of these conditions and the range of people affected, the Coalition has a challenging task ahead. There is much work to be done, and the Coalition is uniquely poised to take the lead in communicating to the American public the importance of NIAMS-funded research and the progress that has resulted from these efforts.

We look forward to our continued partnership with the Coalition as it serves as a liaison between NIAMS and the many groups interested in the various mission areas of the Institute. For additional information about the NIAMS Coalition, please visit http://www.niams.nih.gov/About_Us/Mission_and_Purpose/outside_org.asp .

Stephen I. Katz, M.D., Ph.D.
Director
National Institute of Arthritis and
Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases
National Institutes of Health

Research Watch . . .

Researchers have developed a sustained-release drug carrier for the treatment of osteoarthritis.
Full story: http://www.niams.nih.gov/News_and_Events/Spotlight_on_Research/2008/Sust_Rel_Drug_for_OA.asp

High-trauma fractures in older men and women are linked to osteoporosis.
Full story: http://www.niams.nih.gov/News_and_Events/Press_Releases/2007/11_28.asp

Researchers from the NIAMS Intramural Research Program (co-author Daniel Kastner, M.D., Ph.D., and author Elaine F. Remmers, Ph.D.) and Sweden have identified a genetic region associated with an increased risk of rheumatoid arthritis.
Full story: http://www.niams.nih.gov/News_and_Events/Press_Releases/2007/10_04.asp

Despite decreased disease activity, the workforce dropout rate in women with rheumatoid arthritis remains high.
Full story: http://www.niams.nih.gov/News_and_Events/Spotlight_on_Research/2007/disease_activity_workforce_dropout_in_women_with_RA.asp

The sex of adult mouse muscle stem cells affects their muscle regeneration efficiency.
Full story: http://www.niams.nih.gov/News_and_Events/Spotlight_on_Research/2007/cell_sex_and_stem_cell.asp

"Smurfs" (Smad Ubiquitination Regulatory Factors) may cause osteoarthritis.
Full story: http://www.niams.nih.gov/News_and_Events/Spotlight_on_Research/2007/smurf_arthritis.asp

Rosacea may be caused by an immune response.
Full story: http://www.niams.nih.gov/News_and_Events/Spotlight_on_Research/2007/rosacea.asp

Oral cyclophosphamide improves the quality of life in patients with scleroderma lung disease.
Full story: http://www.niams.nih.gov/News_and_Events/Spotlight_on_Research/2007/scleroderma_Oral_Cyclophosphamide.asp

Specialized MRI may detect early osteoarthritis.
Full story: http://www.niams.nih.gov/News_and_Events/Spotlight_on_Research/2007/oa_early_detect_MRI.asp

Scientists examine peak bone mass timing and body fat as they relate to bone.
Full story: http://www.niams.nih.gov/News_and_Events/Spotlight_on_Research/2007/pediatric_bone_health.asp

Scientists identify cell differences that enable muscle repair.
Full story: http://www.niams.nih.gov/News_and_Events/Spotlight_on_Research/2007/satellite_cells.asp

NIAMS calls for interdisciplinary research proposals: Building Interdisciplinary Research Team (BIRT) Revision Awards.
See:http://www.niams.nih.gov/News_and_Events/Announcements/2007/birt_announce.asp

NIAMS funds three new Centers of Research Translation.
See: http://www.niams.nih.gov/News_and_Events/Announcements/2007/corts.asp

NIAMS introduces a new CD-ROM: Easy-to-Read Health Information on Bones, Muscles, Joints, and Skin in English, Spanish, and Chinese.
See: http://www.niams.nih.gov/News_and_Events/Announcements/2007/bones_muscles_joints_cd.asp

NIAMS and Dr. Katz are prominently featured in the November issue of AAOS Now , the official news publication of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS).
See the three-part series on the AAOS Web site as follows:

Grants and Contracts . . .

The following announcements related to NIAMS appeared in recent issues of the NIH Guide to Grants and Contracts. These announcements are made to the research community to express our interest in funding specific areas of research. For more information on NIAMS grants and contracts, visit the NIAMS Web site at: http://www.niams.nih.gov/Funding/default.asp and the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts at: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/index.html.

Requests for Applications:

Countermeasures Against Chemical Threats (CounterACT) Advanced Development Cooperative Agreements (U01), RFA-NS-08-003. Issued: October 2, 2007, letters of intent receipt date: November 9, 2007; application receipt date: December 10, 2007.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-NS-08-003.html

See http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-ns-08-007.html about eligibility requirements.

Limited Competition for Countermeasures Against Chemical Threats (CounterACT) Research Centers of Excellence (U54), RFA-NS-08-004. Issued: October 5, 2007, letters of intent receipt date: November 9, 2007; application receipt date: December 10, 2007.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-NS-08-004.html

Human Tissue and Organ Research Resource (U42) - Limited Competition, RFA-RR-07-006. Issued: October 12, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: not applicable; application receipt date: January 30, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RR-07-006.html

NIAMS Building Interdisciplinary Research Team (BIRT) Revision Awards (R01),
RFA-AR-08-001. Issued: November 2, 2007; letter of intent receipt date: February 15, 2008; application receipt date: March 18, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-AR-08-001.html

Requests for Applications (NIH Roadmap)

2008 NIH Director's Pioneer Award Program (DP1), RFA-RM-08-013. Issued: November 1, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: not applicable; application receipt date: January 16, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-08-013.html See http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-RM-08-006.html for additional application requirements.

2008 NIH Director's New Innovator Award Program (DP2), RFA-RM-08-014. Issued: November 9, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: not applicable; application receipt date: March 31, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-08-014.html

Molecular Libraries Probe Production Centers Network (MLPCN) (U54) - Limited Competition, RFA-RM-08-005. Issued: November 9, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: December 13, 2007; application receipt date: January 10, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-08-005.html

Discovery of Novel Epigenetic Marks in Mammalian Cells (R01), RFA-RM-07-015. Issued: November 14, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: January 14, 2008; application receipt date: February 14, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-07-015.html

Studies of the Ethical, Legal, and Social Implications (ELSI) of Human Microbiome Research (R01), RFA-RM-08-006. Issued: November 15, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: January 15, 2008; application receipt date: February 15, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-08-006.html

Technology Development in Epigenetics (R01), RFA-RM-07-011. Issued: November 15, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: January 14, 2008; application receipt date: February 14, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-07-011.html

Technology Development in Epigenetics (R21), RFA-RM-07-012. Issued: November 15, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: January 14, 2008; application receipt date: February 14, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-07-012.html

Pilot-Scale Libraries (PSL) for High-Throughput Screening (P41), RFA-RM-08-003. Issued: November 15, 2007; letters of intent receipt dates: December 12, 2007, December 12, 2008; application receipt dates: January 8, 2008, January 8, 2009.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-08-003.html

Reference Epigenome Mapping Centers (U01), RFA-RM-07-013. Issued: November 15, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: February 7, 2008; application receipt date: March 07, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-07-013.html

Epigenomics Data Analysis and Coordination Center - EDACC (U01), RFA-RM-07-014. Issued: November 15, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: February 7, 2008; application receipt date: March 07, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-07-014.html

New Methodologies for Natural Products Chemistry (R01), RFA-RM-08-004. Issued: November 15, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: December 23, 2007; application receipt date: January 23, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-08-004.html

Studies of the Ethical, Legal, and Social Implications (ELSI) of Human Microbiome Research (R01), RFA-RM-08-006. Issued: November 15, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: January 15, 2008; application receipt date: February 15, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-08-006.html

Discovery of Novel Epigenetic Marks in Mammalian Cells (R21), RFA-RM-07-016. Issued: November 16, 2007; letter of intent receipt date: January 14, 2008; application receipt date: February 14, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-07-016.html

Construction of a Reference Sequence Data Set for the Human Microbiome Project (U54), RFA-RM-08-001. Issued: November 21, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: April 22, 2008; application receipt date: May 22, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-08-001.html

Human Microbiome Demonstration Projects (UH2/UH3), RFA-RM-08-012. Issued: December 4, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: April 22, 2008; application receipt date: May 22, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-08-012.html

A Data Analysis and Coordination Center (DACC) for the Human Microbiome Project (U01), RFA-RM-08-007. Issued: December 12, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: January 15, 2008; application receipt date: February 15, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-08-007.html

Development of New Tools for Computational Analysis of Human Microbiome Project Data (R01), RFA-RM-08-008. Issued: December 12, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: January 16, 2008; application receipt date: February 15, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-08-008.html

Development of New Tools for Computational Analysis of Human Microbiome Project Data (R21), RFA-RM-08-009. Issued: December 12, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: January 16, 2008; application receipt date: February 15, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-08-009.html

Development of New Technologies Needed for Studying the Human Microbiome (R01), RFA-RM-08-010. Issued: December 12, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: January 16, 2008; application receipt date: February 15, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-08-010.html

Development of New Technologies Needed for Studying the Human Microbiome (R21), RFA-RM-08-011. Issued: December 12, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: January 16, 2008; application receipt date: February 15, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-08-011.html

Institutional Clinical and Translational Science Award (U54), RFA-RM-08-002. Issued: December 27, 2007; letters of intent receipt dates: May 17, 2008, September 21, 2008; application receipt dates: June 17, 2008, October 21, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-RM-08-002.html

 

Program Announcements:

Predictive Multiscale Models of the Physiome in Health and Disease (R01), PAR-08-023. Issued: November 5, 2007; letters of intent receipt dates: multiple dates, see announcement; application receipt dates: multiple dates, see announcement.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-08-023.html

Human Pluripotent Stem Cell (hPSC) Research Using Non-Embryonic Sources (R01), PA-08-043. Issued: December 13, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: not applicable; application receipt dates: multiple dates, see announcement.

http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-08-043.html

Human Pluripotent Stem Cell (hPSC) Research Using Non-Embryonic Sources (R21), PA-08-044. Issued: December 13, 2007; letters of intent receipt date: not applicable; application receipt dates: multiple dates, see announcement.

http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-08-044.html

Nanoscience and Nanotechnology in Biology and Medicine (R01), PA-08-052. Issued: December 18, 2007; letters of intent receipt dates: not applicable; application receipt dates: multiple dates, see announcement.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-08-052.html

Nanoscience and Nanotechnology in Biology and Medicine (R21), PA-08-053. Issued: December 18, 2007; letters of intent receipt dates: not applicable; application receipt dates: multiple dates, see announcement.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-08-053.html

NIH Revision Awards for Studying Interactions Among Social, Behavioral, and Genetic Factors in Health (R01), PAR-08-065. Issued: January 8, 2008; letters of intent receipt date: April 13, 2008; application receipt date: May 13, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-08-065.html

NIH Revision Awards for Studying Interactions Among Social, Behavioral, and Genetic Factors in Health (R21), PAR-08-066. Issued: January 8, 2008; letters of intent receipt date: April 13, 2008; application receipt date: May 13, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-08-066.html

NIH Revision Awards for Studying Interactions Among Social, Behavioral, and Genetic Factors in Health (P01, P20, P50, P60, U01, U10, U54), PAR-08-067. Issued: January 8, 2008; letters of intent receipt date: April 13, 2008; application receipt date: May 13, 2008.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-08-067.html

Community Participation Research Targeting the Medically Underserved (R01), PAR-08-075. Issued: January 16, 2008; l etters of intent receipt dates: April 16, 2008, April 15, 2009, and April 14, 2010; application receipt dates: May 16, 2008, May 15, 2009, and May 14, 2010. http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-08-075.html

Community Participation Research Targeting the Medically Underserved (R21), PAR-08-076. Issued: January 16, 2008; l etters of intent receipt dates: April 16, 2008, April 15, 2009, and April 14, 2010; a pplication receipt dates: May 16, 2008, May 15, 2009, and May 14, 2010. http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-08-076.html

Program Announcements (NIH Roadmap):

Assay Development for High Throughput Molecular Screening (R21), PAR-08-024. Issued: November 9, 2007; letters of intent receipt dates: multiple dates, see announcement; application receipt dates: multiple dates, see announcement.
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-08-024.html

Solicitation of Assays for High Throughput Screening (HTS) in the Molecular Libraries Probe Production Centers Network (MLPCN) (X01), PAR-08-034. Issued: November 30, 2007; l etters of intent receipt dates: multiple dates, see announcement; application receipt dates: multiple dates, see announcement. http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-08-034.html

Solicitation of Assays for High Throughput Screening (HTS) in the Molecular Libraries Probe Production Centers Network (MLPCN) (R03), PAR-08-035. Issued: November 30, 2007; letters of intent receipt dates: multiple dates, see announcement; application receipt dates: multiple dates, see announcement. http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-08-035.html

Highlights From the Hill, DHHS and NIH . . .

As previously reported, several bills related to the mission areas of the NIAMS were introduced in 2007. Below is a summary of each bill and an update on the number of current co-sponsors. For information on NIH-wide legislative activities, please visit http://olpa.od.nih.gov/ .

Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis Research, Care and Cure Act of 2007

The Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis Research, Care and Cure Act of 2007 (H.R. 1188) was introduced in the House on February 16, 2007, by Representative David Wu (D-OR) . The bill would require the Director of NIAMS to conduct or support psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis research and coordinate such research with other NIH institutes and centers, and would establish a national psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis patient registry through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The bill was referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce. The companion bill, S. 1459, was introduced in the Senate on May 23, 2007, by Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ).The bill was referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions. Currently, there are 60 House co-sponsors and 9 Senate co-sponsors. Additional information related to these bills can be viewed at:http://olpa.od.nih.gov/legislation/110/pendinglegislation/psoriasis_act.asp .

Lupus Research, Education, Awareness, Communication, and Healthcare Amendments of 2007

On February 27, 2007, the Lupus Research, Education, Awareness, Communication, and Healthcare Amendments of 2007 (H.R. 1192) was introduced in the House by Representative Kendrick Meek (D-FL) . The bill would require NIH to expand and intensify research on lupus, and enhance public and health professional awareness of the disease. The bill also includes non-NIH provisions for a national lupus public awareness campaign, a national epidemiological study, and a study to evaluate and improve federal and state activities related to lupus research, education, and awareness programs. The bill was referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce. The companion measure, S. 1359, was introduced in the Senate on May 10, 2007 by Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) , and is identical to H.R. 1192. The bill was referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions. Currently, there are 73 House co-sponsors and 15 Senate co-sponsors. Additional information related to these bills can be viewed at: http://olpa.od.nih.gov/legislation/110/pendinglegislation/lupus_research.asp.

Arthritis Prevention, Control, and Cure Act of 2007

On March 1, 2007, the Arthritis Prevention, Control, and Cure Act of 2007 (H.R. 1283) was introduced in the House by Representative Anna Eshoo (D-CA) . The provisions relevant to NIH would require the agency to establish the Arthritis and Rheumatic Diseases Interagency Coordinating Committee; expand and intensify programs on juvenile arthritis; and award planning grants or contracts on juvenile arthritis. It is virtually identical to S. 626 introduced by Senator Edward M. Kennedy (D-MA) on February 15, 2007. The House bill was referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce. The Senate bill was referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions. Both bills are similar to versions introduced in 2005. Currently, there are 200 House co-sponsors and 44 Senate co-sponsors. Additional information related to these bills can be viewed at: http://olpa.od.nih.gov/legislation/109/pendinglegislation/arthritis.asp.

Budget Update

FY 2007

In Fiscal Year (FY) 2007, NIAMS funded 261 new and competing continuation applications for a success rate of 20.0 percent; the overall NIH success rate was 21.3 percent. Additional details about the distribution of the FY 2007 appropriation, including success rates for all budget activities, are available on the NIAMS Web site at: http://www.niams.nih.gov/About_Us/budget/mechanism_table_fy2007.asp

FY 2008

On December 26, President George W. Bush signed into law the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2008 (Public Law 110-161, HR 2764). The law provides $29.5 billion for NIH, following an across-the-board rescission of 1.747 percent. This represents an increase of approximately 1 percent over FY 2007. Similar to last year, the appropriation to the NIH Office of the Director includes funding for the NIH Common Fund, which includes the Roadmap Initiative. The funding level for NIAMS in FY 2008 is $508.6 million, which is essentially the same as FY 2007.

Specific funding policies are still being developed within NIH and will be shared when available. As was the case last year, funding priority will be given to new investigators and first-time renewal applications from new investigators. Each institute has again been asked to fund a target number of new investigators; the goal for NIAMS is the same as last year: 41. To help reach this target, the NIAMS is allowing a 3-percent payline differential for new investigators. While funding policies are still being finalized, the NIAMS is operating under an interim funding plan for FY 2008, which is available on the NIAMS Web site at: http://www.niams.nih.gov/About_Us/Budget/funding_plan_fy2008.asp

FY 2009

The President's Budget request for FY 2009 is scheduled to be released on February 4; details will be shared after that date.

NIAMS Faces . . .

The NIAMS Advisory Council welcomes four ad hoc members: S. Wright Caughman, M.D., director of the Emory Skin Diseases Research Center, executive associate dean for Clinical Affairs/Emory Clinic, and the Alicia Leizman Stonecipher chair in the Department of Dermatology at the Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, Ga. ; John H. Klippel, M.D., president and chief executive officer of the Arthritis Foundation, Atlanta, Ga.; Ann Kunkel , education coordinator in pediatric rheumatology at the University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, member and leader in the Association of Rheumatology Health Professionals (ARHP), and a prominent volunteer for the national Arthritis Foundation; and H. Lee Sweeney, Ph.D., the William Maul Measey professor and chairman of the Department of Physiology and professor of medicine and professor of surgery at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia.

Barbara E. Footer, M.S., R.D., joined the NIAMS Extramural Program as a research program analyst in the Skin and Rheumatic Diseases Branch. Barbara comes to NIAMS with over 25 years experience in research, business development and program/project management. Before joining the NIAMS, she worked with the state of New Mexico as a behavioral health transformation grants program manager for two DHHS behavioral health grants. Barbara is a graduate of the University of Maine , Orono, with a B.S. in food and nutrition. She obtained her M.S. degree in human nutrition and foods from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University , Blacksburg .

The Institute welcomes Debbie Stone, M.D., as a staff clinician in the Office of the Clinical Director. Dr. Stone received her B.A. from Harvard College , Cambridge , Mass. , and her M.D. from the University of Florida College of Medicine, Gainesville .  After completing a general pediatrics residency at the University of Pittsburgh, she joined the NIH Medical Genetics Fellowship Program and worked at the National Human Genome Research Institute for three years and then at the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke for two years.  Dr. Stone also worked in pediatrics at the Fair Oaks Hospital in Fairfax , Va. and at Suburban Hospital in Bethesda , Md.

Robin DiLiello joined the NIAMS budget office as a senior analyst in October. Prior to joining the NIAMS, Robin was a budget analyst in the NIH Office of the Director, where she was responsible for many of the budget models used by Dr. Zerhouni and other senior NIH staff.  Robin designed and developed the Roadmap Initiatives Analysis Database as well as a principal investigator model.  Before coming to NIH, Robin was a financial analyst at T. Rowe Price Group, Inc. She has a bachelor's degree in finance from James Madison University , Harrisonburg , Va.

The Institute welcomes Ms. Sara Rosario Wilson, who joined the NIAMS Office of Communications and Public Liaison in January. Sara comes to NIAMS after six years at the National Institute on Drug Abuse, where she served as deputy press officer in the NIDA Communications Office and lead staffer for Spanish-language translations. Sara began her career at NIH as an intern with the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities National Internship Program.  She received her bachelor's degree in public communication from the University of Puerto Rico .

Ray Fleming, deputy director of the NIAMS Office of Communications and Public Liaison and senior science writer, retired after 27 years of federal service.

Wan-Ju Li, M.S., Ph.D., research fellow, Cartilage Biology and Orthopaedics Branch, NIAMS Intramural Research Program (IRP), has accepted a faculty position at the University of Wisconsin , Madison .

Catherine Kuo, Ph.D., postdoctoral fellow, Cartilage Biology and Orthopaedics Branch, IRP, has accepted a position as an assistant professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Tufts University , Boston , Mass. She will be leaving the NIAMS in mid-February.

Kudos . . .

Stephen I. Katz, M.D., Ph.D., director of NIAMS, received the 2007 Marriott Lifetime Achievement award, the top honor presented at the annual Washington , D.C. , Arthritis Foundation gala, on November 17, 2007. The award is in recognition of his "outstanding and lifelong achievements and continued support in the fight against arthritis."

Paul H. Plotz, M.D., acting deputy director of NIAMS and chief of the Arthritis and Rheumatism Branch in the NIAMS IRP, gave the first lecture in the 2007-2008 NIH Clinical Center Grand Rounds Contemporary Clinical Medicine Great Teachers Series, "The Vocation of Medicine: Lessons from Real and Imagined Doctors."

Daniel L. Kastner, M.D., Ph.D., clinical director and chief of NIAMS' Genetics and Genomics
Branch, IRP, has been awarded the position of "NIH Senior Investigator." The honorific Intramural Professional Designation (IPD) is reserved for tenured intramural senior investigators at the highest level of accomplishment (top two or three percent of senior investigators at the NIH).

From the Health Partnership Program.

The HPP continues to make progress under the program's five focus areas: public health education, patient care, health disparities research, recruitment to research careers, and community relations. Below are highlights of current activities.

NIAMSCommunity Health Center(CHC)

Since the opening of the CHC in July 2001, NIAMS has enrolled 1,615 new patients into the "Natural History Study of Rheumatic Diseases in Minorities."

Michael M. Ward, M.D. is currently conducting the study, "Time Perspective and Health," which looks at whether there is a relationship between a person's health status and his or her time perspective, i.e., present or future oriented. Since July 2006, Dr. Ward's team has conducted surveys among patrons of community beauty salons and barbershops in Silver Spring , Md. His team recently finished participant recruitment and data collection, and they are now analyzing data.

Community Meetings and Events

NIAMS continues to disseminate information on rheumatic diseases and clinical studies at health fairs within the tristate area.  In 2007, NIAMS participated in 44 health events. Recent exhibits include the First Ecuadorian Cultural Festival and Health Fair, the Third Annual Community Health Fair of Evangel Assembly, the Metro D.C. Coalition of Labor Union Women's Health Fair, the Kennedy Senior Wellness Center Health Fair, and the Tenth Annual D.C. Senior Holiday Celebration.

 

Update on Equal Employment Opportunity . . .

The NIH Summer Internship in Biomedical Research for 2008 is accepting applications via the Web site at http://www.training.nih.gov/student. The NIAMS is already receiving applications for these positions. For additional information concerning research training opportunities specifically at the NIAMS, IRP, please visit http://www.careers.niams.nih.gov.

NIAMS is planning job-shadow days for students from the NIAMS' Adopt-a-Schools: Woodrow Wilson High School 's SciMaTech Academy and Wheaton High School 's Academy of Biosciences and Health Professions. In addition, NIAMS staff plan to participate as judges at Wilson High School 's annual SciMaTech Academy Science Fair in February. In March, NIAMS staff will participate at Wilson High School SciMaTech Academy's annual health fair.

Since the last NIAMS Advisory Council, Institute staff participated in the following events:

  • Society for the Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS) annual conference (October 2007)
  • American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES) annual conference (November 2007)
  • Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students (ABRCMS) (November 2007)

 

Upcoming Events . . .

Look for the NIAMS exhibit at the following events between now and the June 2008 issue:

  • American Academy of Dermatology, San Antonio , Tex. , February 1-5, 2008
  • American Physical Therapy Association, Nashville , Tenn. February 7-9, 2008
  • American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, San Francisco , Calif. , March 3-9, 2008
  • International Society for Clinical Densitometry, San Francisco , Calif. , March 12-15, 2008
  • Woodrow Wilson Senior High SciMaTech Academy Health Fair, Washington , D.C. , March 19, 2008
  • National Hispanic Medical Association, Washington , D.C. , March 23-24, 2008
  • Dermatology Nurses Association, Las Vegas , Nev. , March 25-28, 2008
  • U.S. Department of Labor Women's Health Fair, Washington , D.C. , March 26, 2008
  • National Science Teachers' Association, Boston , Mass. , March 27-29, 2008
  • Joint Conference of the American Society of the Aging and National Council of the Aging, Washington , D.C. , March 27-30, 2008
  • American Geriatrics Society, Washington , D.C. , May 1-2, 2008
  • American College of Gynecologists and Obstetricians - Regional Meeting, New Orleans , La. , May 5-7, 2008
  • National Association of Orthopaedic Nurses, San José , Calif. , May 17-21, 2008
  • American College of Physicians, Washington , D.C. , May 15-17, 2008
  • American Academy of Physicians Assistants, San Antonio , Tex. , May 29-30, 2008

 

Publications . . .

New Esenciales ("Fast Facts"):

¿Qué es la estenosis espinal? (What Is Spinal Stenosis?)
¿Que es el vitíligo? (What Is Vitiligo?)

New CD-ROM:

Easy-to-Read Health Information on Bones, Muscles, Joints, and Skin in English, Spanish, and Chinese

New Booklet:

(Chinese) The Surgeon General's Report on Bone Health and Osteoporosis: What It Means To You

Revised Booklets:

Questions and Answers About Marfan's Syndrome
Questions and Answers About Growth Plate Injuries
Questions and Answers About Heritable Disorders of Connective Tissue

 

For information on arthritis and musculoskeletal and skin diseases, including copies of the publications listed above, contact:

National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS)
Information Clearinghouse
National Institutes of Health

1 AMS Circle
Bethesda, MD 20892-3675
Phone: 301-495-4484
Toll free: 877-22-NIAMS (877-226-4267)
TTY: 301-565-2966
Fax: 301-718-6366
Email: NIAMSinfo@mail.nih.gov
Website: http://www.niams.nih.gov

If you need more information about available resources in your language or another language, please visit our website or contact the NIAMS Information Clearinghouse at NIAMSinfo@mail.nih.gov.

For information on osteoporosis and other bone diseases, contact:

NIH Osteoporosis and Related Bone Diseases ~ National Resource Center

2 AMS Circle
Bethesda, MD 20892-3676
Phone: 202-223-0344
Toll free: 800-624-BONE (2663)
TTY: 202-466-4315
Fax: 202-293-2356
Email: NIHBoneInfo@mail.nih.gov
Website: http://www.bones.nih.gov

If you need more information about available resources in your language or another language, please visit our website or contact the NIAMS Information Clearinghouse at NIAMSinfo@mail.nih.gov.

For general information on NIAMS and its research programs, contact:

Office of Science Policy, Planning and Communications
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS)
National Institutes of Health

Building 31/Room 4C02
31 Center Drive, MSC 2350,
Bethesda, MD 20892-2350
Phone: 301-496-8190
TTY: 301-565-2966
Fax: 301-480-2814
Email: niamsinfo@mail.nih.gov
Website: http://www.niams.nih.gov/

If you need more information about available resources in your language or another language, please visit our website or contact the NIAMS Information Clearinghouse at NIAMSinfo@mail.nih.gov.

Compiled by the Office of Communications and Public Liaison, NIAMS; phone: (301) 496-8190; e-mail: NIAMSInfo@mail.nih.gov