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Vol. LXIII, No. 21
October 14, 2011

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Nakamura Named CSR’s Acting Director

Dr. Richard Nakamura

Dr. Richard Nakamura is now acting director of the Center for Scientific Review. NIH director Dr. Francis Collins made the appointment to replace CSR director Dr. Toni Scarpa, who retired Sept. 2.

Nakamura has had a 35-year tenure at the National Institute of Mental Health, where he has served as both scientific director and deputy director; he served as acting director from 2001 to 2002.

“I appreciate Richard’s willingness to lead CSR in this transitional period,” said Collins. “He received various professional and government awards, including the Presidential Rank Award for outstanding leadership.”

Nakamura will lead CSR’s 450 scientists and administrative staff, overseeing their efforts to manage 80,000 incoming NIH grant applications a year and review the majority of them in CSR peer review groups. CSR holds 1,600 review meetings a year, involving about 18,000 reviewers from the scientific community.

“I look forward to working with the many dedicated individuals engaged in this great enterprise,” said Nakamura. “It’s a privilege to help NIH identify research with the most promise for making our world more healthy and productive.”

Nakamura came to NIMH in 1976 as a postdoctoral fellow. In the mid-1980s, he coordinated NIMH’s Biobehavioral Program and later was chief of its Integrative Neuroscience Research Branch. Between 1997 and 2007, he served as the institute’s deputy director. From 2007 to 2011, he has been institute scientific director. While at NIMH, he also has held other positions, including associate director for science policy and program planning; chief, Behavioral and Integrative Neuroscience Research Branch; and coordinator, ADAMHA Office of Animal Research Issues.

Nakamura earned his B.A. in psychology from Earlham College in Richmond, Ind., his M.A. in psychology from New York University and his Ph.D. in psychology from the State University of New York at Stony Brook.

He has expertise in a number of areas including cognitive and comparative neuroscience, science policy/funding and ethics in science. He has published 30 peer-reviewed scientific journal articles, most related to neurocognition in primates.

NIAAA Council Gets New Members

NIAAA acting director Dr. Kenneth Warren (second from r) welcomes new NIAAA council members (from l) Dr. Andres Gil, Dr. Suzanne De La Monte and Dr. Andrea Barthwell. Not shown is Dr. Cindy Ehlers.
NIAAA acting director Dr. Kenneth Warren (second from r) welcomes new NIAAA council members (from l) Dr. Andres Gil, Dr. Suzanne De La Monte and Dr. Andrea Barthwell. Not shown is Dr. Cindy Ehlers.

NIAAA recently welcomed four new council members.

Dr. Andrea Barthwell is founder and CEO of the global health care and policy consulting firm EMGlobal LLC. She also has served as deputy director for demand reduction in the Office of National Drug Control Policy and was a principal advisor in the Executive Office of the President on policies aimed at reducing the demand for illicit drugs.

Dr. Suzanne De La Monte is a professor of pathology & clinical neuroscience, Brown University Medical School & Rhode Island Hospital. In her research career of more than 25 years in neurodegeneration, alcohol research and metabolism, she has authored and co-authored over 217 publications in such journals as the Journal of Neurological Science, Journal of Clinical Investigation and Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

Dr. Andres Gil is vice president for research at Florida International University. As an educator, social worker and advisor to the Mental Health Services Administration and NIMH on issues pertaining to at-risk youth, Gil has co-authored numerous articles that examine the role of culture, race and ethnicity in current social problems.

Dr. Cindy Ehlers is a professor in the department of molecular and integrative neurosciences, and molecular and experimental medicine at the Scripps Research Institute and director of the laboratory of translational neuropharmacology. Among her research projects are translational studies on the toxic effects of alcohol and other drugs on development in animal models.

New Class of Pioneer Awardees Named

New Class of Pioneer Awardees Named
Acting NIGMS director Dr. Judith Greenberg announced the latest group of Pioneer Award recipients at the program’s annual symposium in September. Part of the Common Fund, the award supports exceptionally creative scientists who take highly innovative, and often risky or unconventional, approaches to major challenges in biomedical or behavioral research. NIH has made 111 Pioneer Awards since 2004, including 13 this year. In front are (from l) Andrew Feinberg, William Clemons, Brenda Bass, James Hildreth and David Schneider. At rear are (from l) Drs. Sharad Ramanathan, Tao Pan, Andreas Tolias, Mehmet Fatih Yanik, Florian Engert, Jean Bennett and Utpal Banerjee. Not pictured is Dr. Thanos Siapas. For details on the program and its newest recipients, see

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