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NIGMS Restructures as it Absorbs Disbanded NCRR Divisions

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – The National Institute of General Medical Sciences has formed two new divisions as part of a restructuring effort as it takes over some of the programs formerly run by the National Center for Research Resources.

The reorganization at NIGMS comes after NCRR was disbanded to make way for a new center at the National Institutes of Health called the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences, which launched at the end of 2011.

One of the new NIGMS departments is the Division of Biomedical Technology, Bioinformatics, and Computational Biology, which will administer research and training areas that involve biology and computer engineering, mathematics, and physics. This division includes the former NIGMS Center for Bioinformatics and Computational Biology (CBCB), as well as other NCRR biomedical technology programs, and it will be directed by former CBCB Director Karin Remington.

"Great progress is often made at the intersections of scientific fields, and the Division of Biomedical Technology, Bioinformatics, and Computational Biology is well-positioned to facilitate just such advances," NIGMS Acting Director Judith Greenberg said in a statement released today.

Another new department, the Division of Training, Workforce Development, and Diversity, will house the Institutional Development Award program from NCRR, which supports research and investigators in states in which the success rate for NIH applications historically has been low, as well as rural and medically underserved communities.

This division also will include NIGMS research training programs with activities that were formerly in the Division of Minority Opportunities in Research (MORE), and it will be led by Clifton Poodry, former director of the MORE program.

"We created the new division because we recognize that training and the development of an outstanding and diverse biomedical workforce are intimately connected. The reorganization is consistent with key elements of our strategic plans and reflects input we received from many stakeholders," Greenberg said.

NIGMS said that the amount of funding allocated for these programs will not change as part of the reorganization, and most grants will continue to be managed by the same staff members.

"This reorganization will synergize and strengthen our activities in several critical mission areas," Greenberg said.

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