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Wednesday Afternoon Lectures

The Wednesday Afternoon Lecture series — held on its namesake day at 3 p.m. in Masur Auditorium, Bldg. 10 — takes a Thanksgiving break on Nov. 22, but returns with Dr. Tobias Bonhoeffer on Nov. 29, speaking on "A Thorny Path to Memories: Dendritic Spines, Neurotrophins and Their Role in Synaptic Plasticity." He is professor, Max Planck Institute for Neurobiology, Germany.

For more information or for reasonable accommodation, call Hilda Madine, 594-5595.

MCP Class of 2000 Graduates

A graduation ceremony was recently held at the Lawton Chiles International House for participants in the NIH Management Cadre Program.

They are Vivian A. Auld (NLM), Robert Bock (NICHD), Gladys Melendez-Bohler (NINDS), Dr. Diane Case (NRC), Rebecca DerSimonian (NIAID), James Hadley (NIAID), Christine L. Hollingsworth (NCCAM), Joseph Januszewski III (CIT), Myrna L. Lopez (OD/ORS), Patrick Miller (NCI), Yvette Porter (OD), Barbara Wingrove (NICHD), and Judith Wortman (NIAMS).

Acting NIH director Dr. Ruth Kirschstein and Dr. Yvonne Maddox, acting NIH deputy director and cochair of the leadership development committee (which administers the MCP), presented the certificates.

The Management Cadre Program is designed to train and qualify successful and highly motivated NIH employees currently at GS/GM grades 12, 13 or 14 to help meet NIH's future leadership staffing needs. The 18-month program is designed to enhance career growth and provides a combination of on-the-job training, academic courses and selected short assignments to prepare individuals to compete for advancement and/or career change to leadership positions.

New Newsletter Goes Inside eRA

To deal with 46,000 grant applications (many with bulky appendixes), 3,166 review meetings and 128 national advisory councils, and some 60,000 grant awards, NIH used hundreds of millions of pieces of paper in FY 2000. Since 1996 the IMPAC II system and NIH Commons have been built to the point that now they handle some 576,000,000 transactions annually. The eRA (electronic Research Administration) Project is combining these systems with the goal of developing an end-to-end electronic information environment for NIH extramural activities.

But going electronic raises questions of organizational change that will directly affect employees. That's why a newsletter, Inside eRA, was created. Located online at, it will provide news about the eRA Project, and tips and analyses to help you use the system. Inside eRA was launched to provide a forum about current issues, offer new sources of information and solicit input. Editorial board members are Megan Columbus, Kenneth Dillon, Chip Groh, John McGowan, Felicia Shingler, George Stone and Tim Twomey.

Visit and let the editors know what you would like to see in the newsletter.

Annual Holiday Auction Set, Dec. 8

The Clinical Center's department of laboratory medicine will hold its 28th annual holiday fundraiser auction to benefit the Patient Emergency Fund and the Friends of the Clinical Center on Friday, Dec. 8 in Bldg. 10, Rm. 2C310 conference room and library. This year's theme is "Quilts 2000." There are five hand-made quilts to be raffled off, ranging in size from baby to wall hanging. Tickets are $1 each or 6 tickets for $5. Tickets will be on sale through Thursday, Dec. 7 outside the 2nd floor cafeteria in the Clinical Center. Employees are encouraged to volunteer services or donate items to this event. All donations are tax deductible. The day begins with coffee and a bake sale at 9 a.m., silent auction and white elephant sale at 10:30 a.m., and pizza at 11:30 a.m. At 2 p.m., the silent auction ends and raffle winners will be announced. To make donations call Sheila Barrett, 496-5668, Debra Demeritt, 496-3386, or Norma Ruschell, 496-4473.

NIH-Duke Training Program Open

Applications for the 2001-2002 NIH-Duke Training Program in Clinical Research are now available in Bldg. 10, Rm. B1L403.

Designed primarily for clinical fellows and other health professionals training for careers in clinical research, the program offers courses in research design, statistical analysis, health economics, research ethics and research management.

Courses are offered at the Clinical Center by means of videoconferencing from Duke or on-site by adjunct faculty. Students completing the coursework are awarded a master of health sciences in clinical research from Duke University School of Medicine.

Prospective participants should consult with their institute or center regarding the official training nomination procedure. Applications must be received by Mar. 1, 2001.

For more information, visit

Symposium on Oligonucleotides, Dec. 8

The Therapeutic Oligonucleotide Interest Group will hold its 5th annual symposium, "Therapeutic Oligonucleotides: The Genome Era and the Gene Targeting Clinic," on Friday, Dec. 8 in Masur Auditorium, Bldg. 10 from 7:55 a.m. to 5:05 p.m. In addition to scientists from NIH and Georgetown, speakers will be coming from a variety of universities and biotech companies from the United States and Germany. There will be 15 platform speakers. Registration is not required. Contact Dr. Cho-Chung ( for details.

Clinical Research Training Course

The required course for clinical principal investigators, Clinical Research Training, will be repeated on Dec. 12, noon to 4 p.m. in Bldg. 10's Lipsett Amphitheater.

The course was designed to address one of the essential standards (training and education) recently approved by NIH for conducting clinical research in the intramural research program. Topics include ethical issues in human subjects research, roles and responsibilities of the investigator and institution, regulatory issues and clinical investigators and the mass media.

All principal investigators with a protocol approved through the Clinical Center are required to take the course and successfully complete an exam by Mar. 1, 2001.

Registration will be held until Nov. 30. To register, visit the course web site at a

Employee Suggestion Program Available

The Employee Suggestion Program is a great way to share your ideas for improving government operations and services and to be recognized for your contribution. Complete form HHS-170 (employee suggestion form) and submit your ideas to your IC Employee Suggestion Program coordinator. To find out who your coordinator is, go to or call 496-2832.

NIAMS Conference on Health Disparities

NIAMS is organizing a 11/2-day scientific conference on "Health Disparities in Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases," to be held Dec. 15-16 at the Natcher Conference Center. The goals are to review current knowledge about health disparities in arthritis and musculoskeletal and skin diseases and promote new research opportunities and approaches to eliminating disparities. Cosponsors include several NIH offices, and professional associations.

The deadline for advance registration is Dec. 1. There is no charge for the conference. To register electronically, go to or phone (202) 973-8696. For special accommodation needs contact Felecia Taylor at 594-2463, email

Thrift Savings Plan Open Season

The Thrift Savings Plan is having another open season from Nov. 15, 2000, through Jan. 31, 2001. FERS employees who were hired before July 1, 2000, as well as CSRS employees have an opportunity to change their current election, or make an initial election.

Eligible FERS and CSRS employees may elect to contribute to the G fund (government securities), C fund (stocks) and/or F fund (bonds). FERS employees may contribute up to 10 percent of their salary each pay period and will receive matching agency contributions on the first 5 percent. CSRS employees may contribute up to 5 percent of salary, but do not receive any matching contributions. FERS employees who do not contribute receive an automatic 1 percent agency contribution each pay period. They may choose to distribute this among the three funds.

The features of the plan are described in the Thrift Savings Plan Open Season leaflet, which will be distributed to eligible employees by their IC personnel office. More detailed information is provided in the Summary of the Thrift Savings Plan for Federal Employees booklet and is available in your IC personnel office.

Use or Lose Reminder

Don't forget to officially schedule your "use or lose" annual leave no later than Saturday, Dec. 2, 2000. Questions concerning use or lose leave should be directed to one's human resource office or other program official designated by your institute or center.

STEP Session on Biomedical Imaging

The NIH staff training in extramural programs (STEP) will present a Science for All session entitled "Looking Inside: A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words," on Thursday, Nov. 16 from 8:30 a.m. to noon in the Natcher Conference Center, Conf. Rms. E1/E2.

Biomedical imaging is used in almost every aspect of modern medicine, from the diagnosis and treatment of disease to revealing clues about how the brain, heart and other organs work. Advances in technology are providing physicians with more sophisticated imaging tools than ever before. What are these imaging technologies, including MRI, CT, PET and ultrasound? How do they work and what do they tell us? This session will explore the state-of-the art of biomedical imaging and offer a glimpse into the possibilities for imaging in the future.

The speakers planned are: Dr. Robert Balaban, chief, Laboratory of Cardiac Energetics, NHLBI; Dr. Peter Choyke, chief of research, diagnostic radiology, and chief of magnetic resonance imaging at the Clinical Center; Dr. James Smirniotopoulos, chairman of radiology, Uniformed Services University; and Dr. David Yousem, director of neuroradiology, Johns Hopkins Hospital.

Call the STEP office at 435-2769 for more information or for reasonable accommodation.

Chamber Music Concert, Nov. 26

The Rock Creek Chamber Players will perform at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 26 in the Clinical Center's 14th floor assembly hall. The free public concert, sponsored by the recreation therapy section, will include Fritz Kreisler's recitative and scherzo for solo violin; Gordon Jacob's quintet for clarinet and strings; and Mozart's sonata for piano four hands, K. 497. For reservations (required) and information call (202) 337-8710.

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