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Message from the Scientific Director

photo of dr. robert balaban Robert Balaban, Ph.D.
Scientific Director

P: +1 301 496 2116
F: +1 301 480 5775

The Division of Intramural Research (DIR) in the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) provides a unique environment for conducting innovative basic and clinical research. The purview of the research is broad, ranging from investigations of basic principles of molecular, cellular, and organ-level physiology to clarifying disease mechanisms to establishing new therapies for human diseases through clinical trials. The DIR philosophy is focused on the support of state-of-the-art investigator-initiated research by leaders in the biomedical research community. Each researcher is expected to bring creativity, passion, and commitment to solving important scientific problems. Our ability to sustain research excellence is assured by a robust external review process wherein each investigator’s program is critically evaluated every four years by the Board of Scientific Counselors. Over the last 50 years this strategy within the DIR has supported the research of numerous members of the National Academy of Sciences as well as trained or supported several Nobel Prize winners.

A critical component of this scientific mission is a strong commitment to providing training of the next generation of biomedical research scientists through programs that train a diverse group of individuals at all levels, from high school, college, and graduate students up to postdoctoral training for Ph.D.s and physicians. These programs are highlighted by our Office of Education. NHLBI is also proud of its successful mentoring of junior faculty in both the basic and clinical sciences. Towards this aim, we participate in the Earl Stadtman Investigator program for basic sciences and the Lasker Clinical Research Scholars program for clinical investigators to identify the best and brightest tenure track candidates in biomedical research.

I invite you to explore, in more detail, the researchers that work in the DIR and learn about the science being conducted in the NHLBI DIR program.