NIAID Role in Global Research

NIAID supports the conduct of global research to better understand, treat, and ultimately prevent infectious, immunologic, and allergic diseases and conditions. In addition to advancing these scientific goals, NIAID global research helps to improve the health of millions of people around the world and to promote international economic and political stability. Together, these efforts establish NIAID as a leader in global health.

Map of the world showing research locations

The map identifies 133 countries with NIAID-funded activities in fiscal year 2022.

Credit: NIAID

Understanding, Treating, and Preventing Diseases

Conducting research in international settings allows NIAID-supported scientists to study infectious diseases and immunology under a variety of environmental and social conditions. It also provides opportunities to study the effectiveness of investigational drugs and vaccines in populations that vary genetically and immunologically, in the hope of finding treatments and preventions for wide ranges of disease strains and mutations.

Improving the Health of Millions

Often, international research is required to answer critical scientific questions, particularly regarding infectious diseases that are less common in the United States. In today’s interconnected society, outbreaks of infectious diseases have worldwide implications, both directly through the transmission of disease and indirectly through the economic and political instability that these health concerns can provoke. NIAID support of international research helps develop new knowledge to improve diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of infectious diseases that have potential global impact.

By investing in the development of biomedical research capacity around the world, NIAID also fosters the formation of long-standing research collaborations between U.S. and international scientists, many of whom are based in developing countries. NIAID supports innovative studies on infectious diseases and immunology in populations where the research may be effectively translated into medical care and public-health improvements.

Promoting International Economic and Political Stability

The impact of debilitating diseases, such as HIV/AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis, extends from individuals to families and into the broader society. In turn, the morbidity and mortality associated with these diseases in developing countries can slow or reverse social and economic development. By helping to improve outcomes associated with infectious and immunological diseases, NIAID contributes to global development and stability.

Leading Contributions to Global Health

With infectious diseases among the primary causes of mortality and suffering worldwide, NIAID has embraced its leadership role in the global effort to defeat these diseases. By working with partners in academia, private industry, philanthropic foundations, and other research-supporting agencies, NIAID helps guide and enhance research that improves the quality of human life around the world.

Content last reviewed on