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Vol. LVII, No. 21
October 21, 2005

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FAES Holds Insurance Open Season

The FAES Health Insurance Program is conducting Open Season from Nov. 1-23, and 28-30. The program is open to those who work for or at NIH in full-time positions but are not eligible for government plans. This includes NIH fellows, special volunteers, guest researchers, contractors and full-time temporary personnel. The minimum enrollment period is 3 months. Benefits and/or changes take effect Jan. 1, 2006.

Open Season is for those who did not enroll when first eligible and for current subscribers to make changes. Appointments are required to make changes to medical coverage but not for dental enrollment. FAES offers CareFirst BlueCross/BlueShield PPO and a voluntary dental plan through Cigna.

More information may be obtained from the FAES web site at or from the FAES business office, Bldg. 10, Rm. B1C18. To schedule an appointment, call (301) 496-8063. FAES is open Monday-Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Manchester Quartet Begins 17th Season

The 17th season of lunchtime performances by the Manchester String Quartet at NIH began on Oct. 3. The concerts are free and start at 12:30 p.m. in Masur Auditorium, Bldg. 10.

Future concert dates, all on Mondays, are: Nov. 7; Dec. 12; Jan. 9, 2006; Jan. 30; Feb. 13; Mar. 27; May 1.

The series is made possible by a grant from the Merck Company Foundation. For reasonable accommodation needs, contact Sharon Greenwell, NIH Visitor Information Center, (301) 496-4713 or email

PRAT Program Accepts Applications

The NIGMS Pharmacology Research Associate (PRAT) program is now accepting applications for positions to begin October 2006. This is a competitive research fellowship program to support training at NIH or FDA laboratories for postdoctoral candidates whose research is focused on the pharmacological sciences and related research areas such as molecular pharmacology, signal-transduction mechanisms, drug metabolism, immunopharmacology, chemistry and drug design, structural biology, endocrinology, bioinformatics, and neuroscience.

PRAT fellowships are 3-year appointments that include competitive salaries as well as some supply and travel funds to help support research in preceptors' laboratories. Applicants must identify a preceptor in their application. Preceptors may be any tenured or tenure-track scientist at NIH or FDA who has agreed to host the applicant. Postdoctoral fellows who have more than 1 year of research experience at NIH or FDA at the time of applying are not eligible. Applications must be received by Dec. 16. For more information or application materials, contact the PRAT program assistant at (301) 594-3583 or email

STEP Forum on Inflammation, Oct. 27

The staff training in extramural programs (STEP) committee will present a Science for All forum on the topic, "Inflammation: Friend and Foe," on Thursday, Oct. 27 from 8 a.m. to noon in Natcher Bldg., Rms. E1/E2.

Inflammation is a major part of the body's first defense against infection and is essential to wound healing, but uncontrolled, it can contribute to disease. While inflammation has long been known to be involved in pathologies as diverse as autoimmunity, cancer and gastrointestinal illnesses, scientists have recently uncovered evidence of a previously unsuspected role in illnesses such as Alzheimer's and cardiovascular disease. This forum will examine the cascade of events involved in the inflammatory process, its role in an expanding number of diseases and contemporary strategies to manage inflammation.

Living Arrangements for Older Family Members

Do you think your parent or older relative may need greater support? How do you know what type of living environment is best suited to his or her needs? Attend the seminar "Living Arrangements for Older Family Members" to learn how to identify your older relative's needs and talk to him/her about preferences for a new or enhanced living arrangement. Find out about the various options, from independent to assisted living, to understand how you can help your relative reach a satisfactory decision during this socio-emotional transition. Obtain a list of local and national resources. Course is Wednesday, Nov. 2, noon to 1:30 p.m., Bldg. 31, Conf. Rm. 6C10.

Annual Leave: Use It or Lose It

Annual leave in excess of the maximum carryover balance (in most cases 240 hours) is normally forfeited if not used by the end of the current leave year. If you have not already planned to take those excess hours of annual leave, you should discuss your leave with your supervisor now while there is still time to schedule it. Your bi-weekly Leave and Earnings Statement tells you how much annual leave you must use so that you will not lose it when the leave year ends on Saturday, Jan. 7, 2006.

In spite of planning, circumstances sometimes arise that prevent you from taking leave that has been scheduled and approved earlier during the leave year. In such cases, you and your supervisor are jointly responsible for ensuring that any "use or lose" leave is officially rescheduled. This year, your "use or lose" leave must be scheduled not later than Saturday, Nov. 26.

If you or your supervisor have questions about "use or lose" leave, contact your administrative officer.

CSR Welcomes New Review Interns

Five scientists recently began work in CSR's Review Internship Program, which is designed for biomedical and behavioral research scientists who are interested in careers in science administration. They are (from l): Dr. Bonnie Burgess-Beusse (digestive sciences integrated review group), Dr. Lambratu (Bree) Rahman (oncological sciences integrated review group), Dr. Tanya Hoodbhoy (biology of development and aging integrated review group), Dr. Carol Hamelink (molecular, cellular and developmental neuroscience integrated review group) and Dr. Bukhtiar Shah (cardiovascular sciences integrated review group). Applications are now being accepted from both intramural and extramural scientists, who may apply by Jan. 1, 2006, for positions starting July 2006. More information is available via the employment section of CSR's web site at

Talk on Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, Oct. 28

The women's health special interest group will sponsor a talk titled, "Management of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome," on Friday, Oct. 28 from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in Wilson Hall, Bldg. 1. The speaker is Dr. Katherine Sherif, director, Center for Women's Health, Drexel University College of Medicine, Philadelphia. If you require sign language interpretation, contact Vicki Malick at at least 5 days before the seminar.

HHS Secretary Leavitt Visits
NHLBI director Dr. Elizabeth Nabel and NIH director Dr. Elias Zerhouni welcome HHS Secretary Mike Leavitt (r) to NIH on Sept. 30.
Dr. Lee Helman (l), chief of NCI’s Pediatric Branch, greets John Agwunobi, President Bush’s nominee for HHS assistant secretary (c) and the Secretary.
At NLM with Dr. David Lipman (second from l), director of the National Center for Biotechnology Information, Leavitt views a constantly updated world map that displays global usage of NLM’s Medline/PubMed online database.

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