On June 7, NIA Director Dr. Richard Hodes announced that Dr. John Haaga had been appointed director of the Division of Behavioral and Social Research. Dr. Haaga was the acting director for the previous 15 months and the deputy director since 2004. "Inside NIA" sat down with Dr. Haaga to talk about his research plans for the division.


Haaga to head NIA Division of Behavioral and Social Research

The National Institute on Aging (NIA), part of the National Institutes of Health, today announced that John G. Haaga, Ph.D., an expert in demography and public policy, has been named director of the institute’s Division of Behavioral and Social Research.

Researchers identify genetic links to educational attainment

An international team of researchers has identified 74 areas of the human genome associated with educational attainment. It is well known that social and other environmental factors influence education, but these findings, reported by the Social Science Genetics Association Consortium (SSGAC) and supported in part by the National Institutes of Health, suggest that large genetics analyses may be able to help discover biological pathways as well.

It’s spring! Here’s some exciting news that may help you get some spring fever! Effective with applications submitted on February, 12, 2016, and moving forward, NIH is allowing up to $100,000 plus fringe benefits toward an applicant’s salary to cover the percentage effort requested on NIH K08 and K23 awards. Current K awardees also benefit from these new guidelines.


World’s older population grows dramatically

The world’s older population continues to grow at an unprecedented rate. Today, 8.5 percent of people worldwide (617 million) are aged 65 and over. According to a new report, “An Aging World: 2015,” this percentage is projected to jump to nearly 17 percent of the world’s population by 2050 (1.6 billion).

Case, Deaton awarded Cozzarelli Prize for top paper

The Division of Behavioral and Social Research congratulates Drs. Anne Case and Angus Deaton on their selection as winners of the Cozzarelli Prize from the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Case and Deaton's article, "Rising morbidity and mortality in midlife among white non-Hispanic Americans in the 21st century" is one of six papers published in 2015 to earn this distinction.

In 2009, NIH received its first year of funding through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). NIA received $275 million over two years in ARRA funds. Overall, these funds were used to intensify and expand scientific study and support the research infrastructure in aging and age-related cognitive change, including Alzheimer’s disease, through a series of grants and initiatives. Among the many important projects NIA supported using ARRA funds was the genotyping of DNA samples collected from almost 20,000 participants in the Health and Retirement Study (HRS).


Health care costs for dementia found greater than for any other disease

In the last five years of life, total health care spending for people with dementia was more than a quarter-million dollars per person, some 57 percent greater than costs associated with death from other diseases, including cancer and heart disease. The new analysis, appearing in the Oct. 27, 2015, online issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine, estimates that total health care spending was $287,000 for those with probable dementia and $183,000 for other Medicare beneficiaries in the study.

Recruiting for new Director of NIA’s Division of Behavioral and Social Research

The National Institute on Aging (NIA), a major research component of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), is seeking exceptional candidates for the position of Director, Division of Behavioral and Social Research (DBSR). For the full job posting, please visit http://www.jobs.nih.gov/vacancies/executive/nia_director.htm.

Study shows that individuals age at different rates

Much of the research on human aging has been conducted in animal models and in older people. The Dunedin Study in New Zealand, funded in part by NIA, has taken a different approach, studying a group of 1,037 people born in 1972-73 from birth to age 38. Study investigators recently reported that they have identified, differences in the “biological age” of participants, indicating that young adults are aging at different rates.

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