A Look at the First Advisory Council Meeting of 2019

Funding News Edition: February 20, 2019
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Dr. Lane discussed the 2018 Ebola virus outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), including working with DRC’s Institut National de Recherche Biomedicale to implement the PAmoja TuLinde Maisha clinical trial.

Credit: NIAID

“Good morning and welcome to the open session of the 191st meeting of the Council of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.”

Thus began NIAID Director Dr. Anthony Fauci at the January 28 Advisory Council session, which as usual was filled with noteworthy news and information. Additionally, Dr. Cliff Lane, deputy director for clinical research and special projects and director of the Division of Clinical Research, spoke about DCR’s past and current work on Ebola Virus Disease (EVD).

We cover some of the meeting’s highlights here, but to watch the entire Council presentation, go to the NIAID Advisory Council—January 2019 videocast.

The Budget in Brief

Since Dr. Fauci could not discuss the President’s Budget for Fiscal Year (FY) 2020 before its release, he pointed out key aspects of the FY 2019 budget, including NIH’s receiving a $2 billion (5.4 percent) increase from FY 2018. The increase to NIAID’s budget is 4.8 percent with $37 million for research to combat antibiotic-resistant bacteria and $40 million for developing universal influenza vaccines. 

As part of his remarks on the budget, Dr. Fauci addressed NIAID Paylines, a few features of our Financial Management Plan, and success rates for research project grants, which are likely to range between 21 to 24 percent.

Key Appointments and Retirements

Dr. Fauci brought the audience up to date on those who have been named to various senior-level positions at NIH and within NIAID.

  • Dr. Bruce Tromberg, director of the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering
  • Dr. Johanna Schneider, chief of Strategic Planning and Evaluation Branch, Office of Strategic Planning and Initiative Development and Analysis (OSPIDA)
  • Dr. Dolan Ghosh, chief of OSPIDA's newly established Data Analytics and Research Branch
  • George Kennedy, chief of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases Research Contracts Branch A in the Office of Acquisitions

Three long-serving staff members are now in retirement: Dr. Carole Hudgings, senior advisor to NIAID Deputy Director Dr. Hugh Auchincloss; Dr. Maria Giovanni, director of the Office of Genomics and Advanced Technology in the Division of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases; and Dr. Hortencia Hornbeak, director of the Scientific Review Program in the Division of Extramural Activities.

Other Topics, Including a New Innovator Award in the Works

In addition to covering honors and awards, meetings and events, and legislative updates, Dr. Fauci highlighted a topic that may be of special interest to early-stage investigators: NIAID’s proposal to develop a pilot program using the NIH Director's New Innovator Award (DP2) activity code.

NIAID’s DP2 program will support bold new ideas with little preliminary data. Though the response date has passed for the November 5, 2018 Request for Information (RFI), you may still want to read the RFI to learn more about our plans.

Guest Presentation: An Ebola Update

As part of his talk, Dr. Lane addressed the 2014 to 2016 outbreak in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone and the clinical research programs that NIAID and the three host governments established, including the Partnership for Research on Ebola Virus in Liberia (PREVAIL).

He also highlighted the 2018 outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), including working with DRC’s Institut National de Recherche Biomedicale (INRB) to implement the PAmoja TuLinde Maisha (PALM) clinical trial through a large collaborative effort that the World Health Organization is coordinating. Learn more about the PALM trial in the NIAID November 27, 2018 News Release.

If you’d like to watch Dr. Lane’s segment of the Council meeting, it begins at approximately minute 44 of the videocast.

Subcommittee Synopses

During Council subcommittee meetings, NIAID scientific staff outline concepts, the earliest planning stage of potential research initiatives—requests for applications, program announcements, and solicitations. View the meeting videocasts below to explore these discussions.

Concepts Cleared

Though not all concepts approved by Council become initiatives, they indicate our research priorities. Find our most recent concepts on the following pages:

For a list of other approved concepts, see Concepts: Potential Opportunities

More About Council

For meeting dates, members’ biographical sketches, and other information, go to Advisory Council.

Contact Us

Email us at deaweb@niaid.nih.gov for help navigating NIAID’s grant and contract policies and procedures.

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