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NIH, Mexican Agency Renew Agreement

Acting NIH director Dr. Ruth Kirschstein and Dr. Carlos Bazdresch, director of the National Council for Science and Technology of Mexico (CONACYT) signed an agreement on May 19 at the Lawton Chiles International House to renew for 5 years the Cooperative Biomedical Research Program between NIH and CONACYT. This agreement, in effect since 1994, establishes a bilateral program for cooperation that provides a framework for the exchange of scientists and the support of cooperative biomedical and behavioral research and training. An important element under the agreement is the Pan American Fellowship (PAF) Program that provides 2 years of research and advanced training in NIH laboratories for selected Mexican postdoctoral fellows. NIH and CONACYT cofund the fellows on a roughly equal basis. Since 1996, NIH has hosted 16 PAF fellows in areas of research that include cancer, infectious disease, neuroscience, molecular biology and child health. Fellows are currently working in laboratories at NIAID, NINDS, NIAMS, NCI, NIDDK, NIDCR and NHLBI.

Using the PAF as a model, the Fogarty International Center is in the process of expanding cooperative research activities to other countries of Latin America and the Caribbean. For information regarding the PAF and other opportunities for collaboration with countries of Latin America and the Caribbean, contact Dr. Luis Salicrup, program officer for the Americas in the FIC Division of International Relations. He may be reached at 496-4784; fax 480-3414; or email luis_salicrup@nih.gov.

NIH acting director Dr. Ruth Kirschstein and Dr. Carlos Bazdresch sign the agreement to extend NIH-CONACYT bilateral cooperation.

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