The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is the U.S. government’s medical research agency and the largest public funder of biomedical research in the world. NIH invests more than $30 billion of taxpayer dollars to support cutting-edge research that is helping people live longer and healthier lives, driving the discovery of new ideas, and combating major health challenges. NIH has the pulse on modern medicine.
The four-part series provides a unique opportunity to bring the efforts of NIH into public view. Join NIH scientific and medical experts to learn about what is currently “hot” in biomedical research and discuss what it all means for our health and medical treatment today and in the future.
Topics such as metabolism, the brain, an diet; the role of microbiota in immunity to infection; brain activity and visual perception; and gene therapies for sickle cell anemia will be discussed.
A trip to the NIH campus in Bethesda in late January or early February features select tours.
Individual sessions are also available for separate purchase.
OCT 16 Kevin D. Hall, Integrative Physiology Section Chief, National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.
Hall takes a look at the interplay of metabolism, the brain and diet. Despite claims of diet gurus, there may not be any “best diet” for losing weight. He discusses the powerful biological responses that resist weight loss and promote weight regain, but suggests that there is still hope for successfully treating obesity.
NOV 20 Yasmine Belkaid, Chief, Mucosal Immunology Section, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
Belkaid discusses the role of themicrobiota—the myriad of microbes we co-evolved with—in the development and function of the immune system, and how these microbes protect us against infections.
DEC 18 David Leopold, Chief, Section on Cognitive Neurophysiology and Imaging, National Institute of Mental Health
Leopold explores how the human brain is strongly invested in visual perception, with a sizeable fraction of the cerebral cortex devoted to reading social signals. He explains how researchers have recently come to understand how faces—one of the brain’s most important social cues—are encoded in specialized circuits to support our recognition of individual identity.
JAN 15 John Tisdale, Chief, Cellular and Molecular Therapeutics Branch, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
Tisdale discusses sickle cell disease, which affects 100,000 Americans and millions around the world. The inherited disease affects the hemoglobin in red blood cells that carries oxygen and resultsin severe anemia, frequent severe pain, organ damage, and early mortality. Because the abnormal red blood cells derive from bone marrow stem cells, he explains, efforts to cure the disease are focused on strategies to replace or repair bone marrow stem cells.
Photo caption (upper right): From top to bottom, Kevin D. Hall, Yasmine Belkaid, David Leopold, John Tisdale (All photos courtesy of NIH)