AUTHOR ARCHIVES

Dr. Francis Collins

Director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D. is the Director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). In that role he oversees the work of the largest supporter of biomedical research in the world, spanning the spectrum from basic to clinical research. Dr. Collins is a physician-geneticist noted for his landmark discoveries of disease genes and his leadership of the international Human Genome Project, which culminated in April 2003 with the completion of a finished sequence of the human DNA instruction book. He served as director of the National Human Genome Research Institute at the NIH from 1993-2008.
Results 11-20 of 28

NIH Finds Sleep Gene Linked to Migraines

May 22, 2013 Migraines—pounding headaches sometimes preceded by a visual “aura,” and often coupled with vomiting, nausea, distorted vision, and hypersensitivity to sound and touch—can be highly debilitating if recurrent and prolonged. They affect millions of Americans and an estimated 10–20 percent of the global population. Yet what predisposes individuals to them is ...

How the Zebrafish May Hold the Key to Human Disease

May 15, 2013 Wouldn’t it be instructive if we could see the effect of a genetic mutation in real time, as the gene was misbehaving? Well, that’s one of the perks of using the zebrafish—a tiny, striped, transparent fish. Just last month, an international team of scientists—funded in part by NIH—published the entire ...

Scientists Make Progress in Slowing Diabetes

May 8, 2013 Type 2 diabetes (T2D) has arguably reached epidemic levels in this country; between 22 and 24 million people suffer from the disease. But now there’s an exciting new development: scientists at the Harvard Stem Cell Institute have discovered a hormone that might slow or stop the progression of diabetes. T2D ...

The Double Anniversary of the Double Helix

May 1, 2013 Last week, April 25 marked a very special day. In 2003, Congress declared April 25th DNA Day to mark the date that James Watson and Francis Crick published their seminal one-page paper in Nature describing the helical structure of DNA. That was 60 years ago. In that single page, they ...

NIH Shines a Bright Light on Cocaine Addiction

April 23, 2013 Wow—there is a lot of exciting brain research in progress, and this week is no exception. A team here at NIH, collaborating with scientists at the University of California in San Francisco, delivered harmless pulses of laser light to the brains of cocaine-addicted rats, blocking their desire for the narcotic. ...

The Brain: Now You See It, Soon You Won’t

April 11, 2013 A post mortem brain is a white, fatty, opaque, three-pound mass. Traditionally scientists have looked inside it by cutting the brain into thin slices, but the relationships and connections of the tens of billions of neurons are then almost impossible to reconstruct. What if we could strip away the fat ...

A Big Day for Science: Welcome to the BRAIN Initiative

April 2, 2013 What an exciting day for science and innovation in the United States! I was thrilled to be present at the White House this morning, as President Barack Obama announced a pioneering project to explore the complex workings of the human brain: the Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative. ...

Brown Fat, White Fat, Good Fat, Bad Fat

March 26, 2013 Fat has been villainized; but all fat was not created equal. Our two main types of fat—brown and white—play different roles. Now, two teams of NIH-funded researchers have enriched our understanding of adipose tissue. The first team discovered the genetic switch that triggers the development of brown fat, and the ...

Photo: 'OMG' Microscope Lives Up to Its Name

March 21, 2013 The scientists at the IU School of Medicine-Bloomington nicknamed their new microscope the “OMG” for good reason—the images it produces are showstoppers. The DeltaVision OMX imaging system (its official title) is a $1.2 million dollar microscope that can peek inside a cell and image fluorescent proteins in unprecedented detail. Jane ...

NIH Gains New Insight Into Cause of Parkinson’s Disease

March 18, 2013 I’m blogging today to tell you about a new NIH funded report describing a possible cause of Parkinson’s disease: a clog in the protein disposal system. You probably already know something about Parkinson’s disease. Many of us know individuals who have been stricken, and actor Michael J. Fox, who suffers ...