FYI from the NHLBI Index

January 2009: Vol. 9, Issue 3
Summaries of Meetings
and Announcements of Upcoming Events

National Heart, Lung, and Blood Advisory Council's September Meeting

National Heart, Lung, and Blood Advisory Council's October Meeting

Upcoming NHLBI Workshops and Working Groups

Upcoming 2009 Events


 

National Heart, Lung, and Blood Advisory Council's September Meeting

September 9, 2008

Dr. Nabel welcomed members to the 231st meeting. Because the meeting was to be brief, most members participated via video-conference or telephone.

Dr. Nabel announced that Dr. Keith Hoots will join the Institute in January as Senior Advisor to the Director in the Division of Blood Diseases and Resources. He is currently Professor of Pediatrics and Division Head of Pediatric Hematology at the University of Texas Medical School at Houston, Section Head of Pediatric Hematology at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, and Medical Director of the Gulf State Hemophilia and Thrombophilia Treatment Center.

In response to the recommendations of an advisory group convened by Dr. Nabel to review the Institute?s global health program in light of the major impact of chronic disease worldwide, the Institute has embarked on several activities: requesting that the Institute of Medicine update its report on the epidemiology of cardiovascular disease worldwide; supporting bilateral training programs through partnerships with the Fogarty International Center and other NIH Institutes/Centers; and looking into a role for the Institute in programs that target chronic cardiovascular and pulmonary diseases in developing countries, focusing on training, surveillance, risk assessment, and primary prevention.

Dr. Nabel discussed the Institute's payline, noting that the Institute's funding scores have remained fairly stable over the last 3 to 4 years.

Dr. Nabel reported on two policy issues recently reviewed at the NIH. First, the NIH has decided to consider phasing out second amendments (A2s) to competing RPG applications. Secondly, the NIH is discussing how to focus support more effectively toward early-stage investigators, having found that a substantial portion of the ?new investigators? it has recently supported were actually experienced researchers already established in other fields of science. Council members offered opinions and suggestions regarding both issues.

 

National Heart, Lung, and Blood Advisory Council's October Meeting

October 21, 2008

Dr. Nabel welcomed members to the 232nd meeting and acknowledged representatives of two NHLBI Advisory Committees: Dr. Robert Wise, representing the Heart, Lung, and Blood Program Project Review Committee, and Dr. Pamela Ouyang, representing the Clinical Trials Review Committee.

Dr. Nabel noted two upcoming changes in NHLBI personnel: Dr. Marvin Konstam, Senior Advisor to the Director for Cardiovascular Diseases, is returning to Tufts University and Dr. Keith Hoots will join the Institute in January as the Director of the Division of Blood Diseases and Resources (DBDR). Dr. Nabel acknowledged the efforts of Dr. Susan Shurin, Deputy Director, NHLBI, who has been serving as DBDR Acting Director.

Dr. Nabel thanked the five Council members who are retiring: Dr. Charles Esmon, Dr. Katherine High, Ms. J. Hoxi Jones, Dr. Jeffrey McCullough, and Dr. Patricia Wahl.

Dr. Nabel announced that the NIH is operating under a Continuing Resolution, in effect through March 6, 2009, and may have to operate under the Continuing Resolution for the entire fiscal year. She assured Council that the Institute will do its best to continue its support of research project grants as well as other innovative programs.

Dr. Nabel discussed new NIH policies being developed to foster new and early stage investigators and updated the Council on progress in implementing recommended actions resulting from the recent NIH-led study of the NIH peer review system. She also discussed the new policy regarding applications, which will permit only a single amendment (A1) and will eliminate second amendments (A2s).

Dr. Carl Roth, Associate Director for Scientific Program Operation, NHLBI, presented an analysis of funding patterns for initial (A0) and amended (A1 and A2) applications and estimates of the benefits of eliminating A2s.

Dr. Jeremy Nicholson, Head of the Department of Biomolecular Medicine, Imperial College, London, described his model of the complex human biological system, including genetics, environment, diet, and the microbiome (i.e., the entire set of microbes living in a person?s body). He suggested that the microbiome is a potential new target for drugs and that various diseases (e.g., hypertension and obesity) may be related to microbiome activity.

Dr. Keji Zhao, Senior Investigator, Laboratory of Molecular Immunology, NHLBI Division of Intramural Research, discussed his research in the area of epigenomics?a field that involves the study of changes in the regulation of gene activity and expression that are not dependent on gene DNA sequence.

NHLBI staff presented 7 new initiatives and 8 renewals, all of which had been reviewed in October by the Board of External Experts. The Council was supportive, but made some specific recommendations for consideration prior to their release.

Full minutes of Council meetings and summaries of the initiatives are available.

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Upcoming NHLBI Workshops and Working Groups

PIO representatives will be accommodated on a space-available basis and will be responsible for their own travel expenses.

Working Group: Respiratory Medicine Related Research Training for Adult and Pediatric Fellows

Location: Bethesda, Maryland
Date: March 3-4, 2009
Contact: Dr. Herbert Y. Reynolds

Workshop: Developmental Aspects of the Upper Airway

Location: Bethesda, Maryland
Date: March 5-6, 2009
Contact: Dr. Carol J. Blaisdell

Primary Care Management of Sickle Cell Disease - Review of Treatment Guidelines

Location: Bethesda, Maryland
Date: March 11-13, 2009
Contact: Dr. Harvey Luksenburg

Workshop: Sleepiness and Health-Related Quality of Life

Location: Bethesda, Maryland
Date: April 13-14, 2009
Contact: Dr. Michael Twery

Converging Concepts in Cellular Therapy

Location: Bethesda, Maryland
Date: April 23-24, 2009
Contact: Dr. Traci Mondoro

Thalassemia: Clinical Priorities/Clinical Trials

Location: Bethesda, Maryland
Date: May 20-21, 2009
Contact: Dr. Harvey Luksenburg

 

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Upcoming 2009 Events

National Heart, Lung, and Blood Advisory Council 233rd Meeting

Date: February 10
Location: Bethesda, MD

National Sleep Foundation Pain & Sleep: A Clinical and Scientific Conference

Date: March 1-2
Location: Washington, DC

Hemophilia Federation of America 2009 Educational Symposium

Date: March 13-14
Location: East Indianapolis, IN

Daniella Maria Arturi Foundation 10th International Consensus Conference 2009

Date: March 14-16
Location: New York, NY

Hereditary Hemorrhagic Telangiectasia 8th HHT Scientific Meeting

Date: May 27-31
Location: Santander, Spain

Mended Hearts 57th Annual Convention

Date: June 6-10
Location: Orlando, FL

Scleroderma Foundation 2009 National Patient Education Conference

Date: July 17-19
Location: St. Louis, MO

Histiocytosis Association of America National Conference on Histiocytic Disorders

Date: August 1-2
Location: Milwaukee, WI

Cardio-Facio-Cutaneous Syndrome International 2009 CFC International Conference

Date: August 2-4
Location: Berkeley, CA

Narcolepsy Network 2009 Annual Patient Conference

Date: October 23-25
Location: Jacksonville, FL

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