NIH and Lilly Collaborate, Aim to Make Drug Development Pipelines More Productive

Over the past decade, collaborative research efforts to support the discovery and development of medicines has increased dramatically. Last month, the National Institutes of Health and Eli Lilly and Company announced a new collaboration: they will generate a publicly available resource to profile the effects of thousands of approved and investigational medicines in a variety of advanced disease-relevant testing systems [1]. In-depth knowledge of the biological profiles of these medicines may enable researchers to better predict treatment outcomes, improve drug development, and lead to more specific and effective approaches.

NCATS/Lilly collaboration

NIH Launches Online Resource on Behavioral and Social Science Research Methods

A Web-based interactive anthology will provide psychologists, economists, anthropologists, sociologists and other scientists with the latest research methods and tools to address emerging challenges in public health, such as the obesity epidemic and the rise of chronic diseases such as heart disease. The Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research (OBSSR) at the National Institutes of Health collaborated with New England Research Institutes to create the free resource, called e-Source.

OBSSR e-Source

Childhood Cancer Linked to Delays in Developmental Milestones

Infants and toddlers who have been treated for cancer tend to reach certain developmental milestones later than do their healthy peers, say researchers at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and in Italy. The findings show that delays may occur early in the course of treatment and suggest that young children with cancer might benefit from such early interventions as physical or language therapy.

Child with cancer

Study Identifies Likely Mechanism Underlying Resveratrol Activity

National Institutes of Health researchers and their colleagues have identified how resveratrol, a naturally occurring chemical found in red wine and other plant products, may confer its health benefits. The authors present evidence that resveratrol does not directly activate sirtuin 1, a protein associated with aging. Rather, the authors found that resveratrol inhibits certain types of proteins known as phosphodiesterases (PDEs), enzymes that help regulate cell energy.

These findings may help settle the debate regarding resveratrol’s biochemistry and pave the way for resveratrol-based medicines. The chemical has received significant interest from pharmaceutical companies for its potential to combat diabetes, inflammation, and cancer. The study appears in the February 3rd issue of the journal Cell [1].

Resveratrol

NIH establishes National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences

In a move to re-engineer the process of translating scientific discoveries into new drugs, diagnostics, and devices, the National Institutes of Health has established the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS). The action was made possible by Congress’ approval of a fiscal year 2012 spending bill and the president’s signing of the bill, which includes the establishment of NCATS with a budget of $575 million.

National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences