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Croyle Named Director of NCI Division

Dr. Robert T. Croyle has been appointed the new director of NCI's Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences. He had been the acting division director since November 2002, and is the division's former associate director for behavioral research. He succeeds DCCPS' first director, Dr. Barbara K. Rimer, who left the post in 2002.

Croyle brings to the position a wealth of experience in cancer control research, including work ranging from prevention to survivorship. He has been an advocate for and collaborator on many cross-cutting issues such as transdisciplinary science, genetic testing, genetic epidemiology, health promotion, measurement and dissemination. Croyle is responsible for building DCCPS' Behavioral Research Program, where he spent 4 years contributing to some of NCI's highest priority areas.

Dr. Robert T. Croyle
The division's major initiatives include cancer communications, health disparities, quality of care, genes and the environment, treatment outcomes and quality of life for cancer survivors and tobacco control. Croyle is responsible for 170 employees, almost 800 extramural grants valued at more than $365 million, over $22 million in contracts, and an additional $75 million in operating budgets for programs and branches.

Before joining NCI in 1998, Croyle worked at three academic institutions and two cancer centers. He spent 9 years as a professor of psychology, member of the Huntsman Cancer Institute, and member of the Genetic Science in Society Program at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. Prior to that, he was a visiting investigator at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, visiting assistant professor of psychology at the University of Washington and assistant professor of psychology at Williams College in Massachusetts.

Croyle's recent research has examined how individuals process, evaluate and respond to disease risk information, including medical diagnoses, risk factor screening and tests for BRCA1 and BRCA2 mutations. His research has been published in professional journals in behavioral science, public health, and cancer, and he has edited two volumes, Mental Representation in Health and Illness (1991) and Psychosocial Effects of Screening for Disease Prevention and Detection (1995). As an academic investigator, Croyle was funded by NCI, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and the National Institute of Mental Health.

He is a member of the Academy of Behavioral Medicine Research and a fellow of the Society of Behavioral Medicine. His service on journal editorial boards includes positions as an associate editor for Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention, and a consulting editor for Health Psychology and the British Journal of Health Psychology.

Brining To Direct NCRR Office of Review

By Robert Schneider

Dr. Sheryl K. Brining has been named director of the Office of Review at the National Center for Research Resources. She has served as the acting director, deputy director, and a scientific review administrator prior to her new appointment.

Brining will direct and coordinate the initial scientific and technical review — conducted at NCRR — of applications for research grants and contracts. OR identifies qualified experts to serve on the three NCRR review committees (initial review group, scientific and technical review board on biomedical and behavioral research facilities, and special emphasis panel).

Dr. Sheryl K. Brining
"This position ensures the integrity of the peer-review process at NCRR," said Dr. Judith Vaitukaitis, NCRR director. "The SRAs and review committee members thoroughly and impartially assess the scientific merit of grant applications submitted by investigators. The high quality of this review process contributes to the immeasurable value of NCRR's biomedical research programs. Dr. Brining has been an outstanding member of the OR in her various capacities, and she is extremely capable of managing the NCRR grant programs that support our nation's health goals."

Brining has served NIH in various capacities since 1991. Before coming to NCRR, she worked as an SRA at the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, health scientist administrator with the Office of Research on Women's Health, and SRA at NIA. She also has served as a consultant to the Grants and Special Programs, International Program at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.

Brining earned her Ph.D. in anatomy/cell biology from the University of Cincinnati. She has published extensively in peer-reviewed journals, and has received numerous awards and honors.

Stassi Joins Center for Scientific Review

Dr. Diane Stassi is the new scientific review administrator for the microbial physiology and genetics 1 study section at the Center for Scientific Review. She comes to CSR from Diversa Corp. in San Diego, where she was principal scientist and project leader for cell engineering. Stassi helped advance Diversa's efforts to clone and express environmental DNA with the goal of discovering novel antibiotics. She earned an M.S. and a Ph.D. in biological sciences from Florida State University in Tallahassee. After postdoctoral studies at the Brookhaven National Laboratory in Upton, N.Y., she moved to industry. Working with the soil bacterium Streptomyces, she focused on protein secretion and the molecular biology and genetics of antibiotic production.

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