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How This Report Is Organized

Chapter 1: About NIH

Chapter 1 opens with a statement from the Director of NIH assessing the state of biomedical and behavioral research. It then describes NIH structure, policies, and procedures, focusing on the operations of the extramural and intramural research programs; mechanisms for strategic planning (including the activities and processes of the Division of Program Coordination, Planning, and Strategic Initiatives and its management of the Common Fund); and various cross-cutting activities not covered in the chapters that follow, such as programs that provide the platform for discovery, including training and career development activities and science literacy efforts.

Chapter 2: Overview of NIH Research

Chapter 2 provides an overview of the NIH research portfolio. The chapter includes the following sections:

  • Introduction
  • Identifying Public Health Needs—Epidemiology
  • Basic Research
  • Preclinical Translational Research
  • Clinical Research
  • Postclinical Translational Research
  • Information at the Service of Health
  • Harnessing Technology
The chapter begins with a brief introduction describing the full continuum of biomedical research at NIH. The research continuum moves from basic research to preclinical translational research, clinical research, and finally postclinical translational research. In partnership with the other agencies of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), NIH aims to bring the rich evidence base of its research into clinical and community practice, ultimately turning discovery into health. The path in the continuum is not strictly linear, because all steps of biomedical research can inform and relate to other areas.

The introduction is followed by a summary of the NIH research portfolio relating to these research stages, across all of the Institutes and Centers (ICs) and Office of the Director (OD) program offices. The summary includes specific examples that illustrate how NIH research at each stage of the continuum augments human knowledge and improves public health. Chapter 2 also describes how NIH ensures the uptake of research results by clinical practitioners and the public. The chapter concludes with a description of NIH-funded research technologies, which provide innovative tools that are used within multiple steps in the continuum and often provide the means for exchange of information.

Chapter 3: Research in Diseases, Disorders, and Health Conditions

Chapter 3 addresses NIH research activities from the perspective of diseases, disorders, and adverse health conditions. The chapter includes the following sections:

  • Cancer
  • Neuroscience
  • Life Stages, Human Development, and Rehabilitation
  • Chronic Diseases and Organ Systems
  • Autoimmune Diseases
  • Infectious Diseases and Biodefense
  • Public Health Emergency Preparedness
  • Minority Health and Health Disparities
These topics, many of which are categories specified in the PHS Act (see Appendix A), are grouped together to address the intent of the statute by presenting information on diseases, disorders, and adverse health conditions in a standardized format. Each topic is addressed in a separate section.

Chapter 4: Centers of Excellence

Chapter 4 addresses NIH Centers of Excellence, which are diverse in focus, scope, and origin. The NIH Centers of Excellence described in this report are a subset: those established by statutory mandate. This chapter provides overviews, progress reports for Fiscal Years (FYs) 2012 and 2013 (covering programmatic and research activities and outcomes), recommendations, evaluation plans, and future directions for the six congressionally mandated NIH Centers of Excellence programs, which are described in the order of their establishment:

  • Alzheimer’s Disease Centers (1984)
  • Claude D. Pepper Older Americans Independence Centers (1989)
  • Senator Paul D. Wellstone Muscular Dystrophy Cooperative Research Centers (2001)
  • National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities Centers of Excellence (2001)
  • Rare Diseases Clinical Research Network (2003)
  • Autism Centers of Excellence (2006)

Appendices

The appendices present reference documents and supporting data:

  • Appendix A provides excerpts from the PHS Act that set the legal mandate for this Biennial Report and the inclusion of certain content within it.
  • Appendix B contains excerpts of the Report of the Advisory Committee on Research on Women’s Health.
  • Appendix C provides the Common Fund Strategic Planning Report, 2013.
  • Appendix D lists and provides links to the missions and strategic plans of the NIH ICs and the missions of the OD program offices.
  • Appendix E consists of data on the primary NIH research training program, the National Research Service Award program, the National Library of Medicine training programs, and NIH graduate medical education activities.
  • Appendix F contains excerpts of Monitoring Adherence to the NIH Policy on the Inclusion of Women and Minorities as Subjects in Clinical Research
  • Appendix G provides catalogs of disease registries and other data systems.
  • Appendix H provides information on actions undertaken to carry out scientific frameworks on recalcitrant cancer.
  • Appendix I lists NIH funding levels for chronic diseases and organ systems.
  • Appendix J contains a list of acronyms that are used in this Biennial Report.

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