Racism threatens NIH’s mission, which seeks “fundamental knowledge about the nature and behavior of living systems, and the application of that knowledge to enhance health, lengthen life and reduce illness and disabilities with and for all people,” said then-NIH director Dr. Francis Collins.
Countless behind-the-scenes activities continued uninterrupted throughout the pandemic to make sure staff and visitors had needed resources—from producing safety signage to shuttling patients to engineering videocasts. Dr. Francis Collins recently thanked ORS staff and learned more about their efforts.
Dr. Nathaniel Comfort of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine explored the history of the eugenics movement in a lecture titled “A Galaxy of Genius? The Enduring Dream of Controlling Human Heredity.”
Dr. Lawrence Tabak assumed the role of acting director on Dec. 20 to lead NIH during this time of transition. Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra had named Tabak to the role on Dec. 9.
On the Cover
Colorized scanning electron micrograph of a cell (teal and green) infected with a variant strain of SARS-CoV-2 virus particles (UK B.1.1.7- purple and pink), isolated from a patient sample. Image captured at the NIAID Integrated Research Facility in Fort Detrick, Md.