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NIA budget, featured research highlights January NACA meeting

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NIA Blog Team

Next week, NIA’s National Advisory Council on Aging (NACA) will hold its first meeting of 2016. The January 20 public session promises to be particularly interesting. NIA Director Dr. Richard Hodes will provide some general background information on the FY 2016 budget for NIH and NIA. The session will also include NIH updates on research policy, as well as new scientific findings. Last week’s blog post described some aspects of the budget, but we can expect a few more details and some questions and answers from the NACA panel on NIA’s plans to use these funds.

This Council’s public session begins on Wednesday morning at 8 o’clock, Eastern time. You can watch the live videocast here: For late risers and followers on the West Coast, the videocast is archived. So you can review the highlights later. The meeting agenda and other materials will be available at on NIA’s website.

Featured speakers

The meeting will feature a number of speakers whom I think many of you will find informative. At approximately 10 a.m., NIH Deputy Director for Extramural Research Dr. Michael Lauer address the Council. His topic is “Evidence-Based Funding: Applying the Scientific Method to Ourselves.”

We will also hear scientific presentations from grantees from NIA’s four extramural divisions:

  • Dr. Laura Niedernhofer, associate professor, Department of Metabolism and Aging, The Scripps Research Institute – Novel Mouse Models for Dissecting Mechanisms and Therapeutic Targets of Aging (Division of Aging Biology)
  • Dr. Malaz A. Boustani, professor of medicine, Center for Aging Research, Indiana University – From Brain Care Discovery to Brain Care Delivery in Less Than a Decade (Division of Neuroscience)
  • Dr. Dalane Kitzman, professor of cardiology, Wake Forest University – A Novel Approach to Improving Exercise Intolerance in Older Patients with Heart Failure with Preserved Ejection Fraction (Division of Geriatrics and Clinical Gerontology)
  • Dr. Anne Case, professor of economics and public affairs, Princeton University – Changes in Mortality in Midlife Americans (Division of Behavioral and Social Research)

They will be followed by Dr. Luigi Ferrucci, NIA scientific director, and head of our Intramural Research Program, who will discuss activities in NIA’s in-house laboratories. Three lab chiefs will also present on research updates: Dr. Myriam Gorospe, Laboratory of Genetics; Dr. Mark Mattson, Laboratory of Neurogenetics; and Dr. Andrew Singleton, Laboratory of Neurosciences.

Council responsibilities

As I hope most of you know, our Council meets three times a year (in January, May, and September). NACA members are senior scientists and recognized experts in their fields. Many have served on NIH review panels and many have received support from NIA or another NIH Institute or Center for their research. Responsibilities of NACA members include:

  • reviewing the performance of NIA Divisions and programs
  • considering concepts for new initiatives or programs and decides whether to approve them
  • following developments and breakthroughs in aging research
  • providing second level review of applications for NIA, in a closed session.

Council members also serve on a wide range of NIA and NIH committees and working groups, including the NIH Council of Councils and the NIA Task Force on Minority Aging Research.

I hope you’ll join us by watching the online videocast. Of course, if you’re in the DC metro area, you’re welcome to come to visit the NIH campus and attend Wednesday’s open session in person. And, if you are interested you can click here for links to past NACA meetings.