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NHGRI Expands Genomics Divisions

By Bio-IT World Staff  

September 10, 2012 | The National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) announced a reorganization today to divide the Extramural Research Program into four new divisions: three genomic divisions and extramural operations. The changes will become effective on October 1.   

The four new divisions are:   

  • The Division of Genome Sciences will oversee basic genomics research and technology development, as well as major activities such as large-scale genome sequencing.   
  • The Division of Genomic Medicine will promote the institute's efforts to advance the application of genomics to medical science and clinical care. The institute's Office of Population Genomics will be subsumed into this division.  
  • The Division of Genomics and Society will be responsible for an expanded program related to the many societal issues relevant to genomics research, incorporating and extending the activities of the institute's Ethical, Legal and Social Implications (ELSI) research program and working to integrate the many NHGRI-wide activities in these areas.   
  • The Division of Extramural Operations will manage grants management and scientific reviews, as well as other operational aspects of the institute's Extramural Research Program.   

NHGRI announced the reorganization during public meetings in January and February. The reorganization was approved by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on June 26 and was announced at the 66th meeting of the National Advisory Council for Human Genome Research on Sept. 10.   

"This reorganization reflects the expanding scope of genomics research, as described in NHGRI's new strategic vision published in Nature last year," Eric D. Green, NHGRI's director, said in a statement. "The mission of the institute has dramatically evolved from the singular focus on the Human Genome Project, for which NHGRI was created, to pursuing an exciting and broad set of opportunities for using genomics to advance medical science and improve human health. NHGRI needs an organizational structure concordant with this expanded mission."  

The four divisions will be led by the following individuals, initially in an acting capacity until the appropriate approvals are obtained:   

  • Division of Genome Sciences: Jeffery A. Schloss, Ph.D., director, and Peter J. Good, Ph.D., deputy director.   
  • Division of Genomic Medicine: Teri A. Manolio, M.D., Ph.D., director, and Bradley A. Ozenberger, Ph.D., deputy director.   
  • Division of Extramural Operations: Bettie J. Graham, Ph.D., director, and Rudy O. Pozzatti, Ph.D., deputy director.  
  • Division of Genomics and Society: NHGRI Deputy Director Mark Guyer, Ph.D. will lead this division on an acting basis until a search for the permanent director is completed.  

In addition, the Institute’s two offices are being renamed the Division of Management and the Division of Policy, Communication and Education. The Division of Intramural Research remains the same.   

NHGRI announcement.   

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