The mission of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) is to conduct basic and translational biomedical research to improve public health. Within NIH, NIAID is the lead Institute for the development of medical countermeasures against infectious agents that might be used in a terrorist attack and for research on immune homeostasis and immune reconstitution.
For these reasons, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has tasked NIH, and NIAID in particular, with developing a robust research program to accelerate the development and deployment of new medical countermeasures for exposure to radiation. This mission is carried out through the development and release of Funding Opportunity Announcements, aimed at providing research dollars in scientific areas that have program relevance. To date, these solicitations have included grants, cooperative agreements and contracts, funded to explore radiation injuries to the different organ systems, identification of targets for radiation damage, as well as development of animal models and medical countermeasures as mitigators and treatments.
In addition, the RNCP holds many scientific meetings, open to researchers and government program staff, to update on progress achieved through its many programs, and identify research gaps for future possible funding.