National Institutes of Health

National Institutes of Health

National Institutes of Health (NIH) is a government agency of the United States whose mission is to seek knowledge about the nature and behavior of living systems and to apply that knowledge to enhance health, lengthen life and reduce illness and disability. The NIH provides leadership, conducts and supports research and information dissemination.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is a government agency of the United States whose mission is to seek knowledge about the nature and behavior of living systems and to apply that knowledge to enhance health, lengthen life and reduce illness and disability. NIH works to develop, maintain and renew scientific human and physical resource to ensure the capability of the U.S. to prevent disease. The NIH aims to enhance the economic well-being of the U.S. by expanding the knowledge base in medical and associated sciences and ensuring high return on public investment in research. One of the goals of the NIH is to promote the highest level of scientific integrity, public accountability and social responsibility in the conduct of science.

The NIH provides leadership by conducting and supporting research in the following areas: Diagnosis, prevention and cures for human diseases; Human growth and development; Biological effect of environmental contaminants; Mental, addictive and physical disorders; Programs for collection, dissemination and exchange of information in medicine and health, including training of medical librarians and health information specialists.



President Obama’s Precision Medicine Initiative (PMI) launched


An agreement was reached between the National Institutes of Health and the Henrietta Lacks family regarding the use of the HeLa genome for research.


A team led by NIH-funded scientists determined the complete genome sequence of the E. coli bacterium


Beginning of the U.S. Human Genome Project, sponsored by the Department of Energy (DOE) and the NIH and part of the international Human Genome Project (HGP) which ran until 2003


Recognizing the importance of computerized information processing methods for the conduct of biomedical research, Congress establishes the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) as a division of the National Library of Medicine

May 1930

The Ransdell Act redesignated the Hygienic Laboratory as the National Institute of Health, authorizing $750,000 for construction of two buildings for NIH, and creating a system of fellowships.


A bacteriological laboratory, known as the Laboratory of Hygiene, was established under Dr. Joseph J. Kinyoun at the Marine Hospital, Staten Island, N.Y., in August, for research on cholera and other infectious diseases (renamed Hygienic Laboratory in 1891.)

Funded Companies

BioCryst Pharmaceuticals

A biotechnology company known for developing small-molecule pharmaceuticals for infectious diseases, inflammatory diseases and cancer. It was founded in 1986 and has headquarters in Durham, North Carolina.

A medical company in Massachusetts focusing on lowering the cost of vaccine distribution.

A life science instrumentation company developing ellipsometry analysis systems for microplates and slide disposables

Envisagenics is a biotechnology company founded by Maria Luisa Pineda and Martin Akerman in 2014 and headquartered in New York City, New York using artificial intelligence and RNA sequencing to develop therapeutics to treat genetic diseases.

A computational immunology and vaccine development company based in Providence, Rhode Island. It was founded in 1998.

SAB Biotherapeutics is a therapeutics and immunotherapy research and development company based in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

Aldatu Biosciences is a Cambridge, Massachusetts-based medical diagnostics company offering diagnostic tools and a proprietary genotyping platform.

Crinetics Pharmaceuticals is a San Diego-based company founded in 2008 by Scott Struthers, Stephen F. Betz and Yun-Fei Zhu.

Cayman Chemical Company is an Ann Arbor, Michigan-based biotechnology company manufacturing healthcare and research diagnostic tools including assay kits, antibodies, proteins, and biochemicals.

New york technology company specializing in the research and development of open-source software in the fields of computer vision, medical imaging, visualization, 3d data publishing and technical software development

Aqualung Therapeutics is a Tucson, Arizona-based biotechnology company developing anti-inflammatory monoclonal antibody products.

A bio-therapeurtics company developing therapies for inflammatory diseases

Microvascular Therapeutics is a Tuscon, Arizona-based biotechnology company.

Etubics is a Seattle-based company founded in 2003 by Frank R. Jones.

Novilytic is a West Lafayette, Indiana-based biochemistry analytics company developing diagnostic tools and technology for protecting and securing drugs and medical devices founded in 2013 by Fred Regnier.

Integrated BioTherapeutics is a Rockville, Maryland-based company founded in 2005 by M. Javad Aman.

Talis Biomedical is a Menlo Park, California-based medical diagnostics company providing diagnostic testing for infectious disease founded in 2010 by BRIAN COE, M.B.A..

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Alfred C. Johnson, Ph.D.

Deputy Director for Management

Carrie D. Wolinetz, Ph.D.

Acting Chief of Staff

Francis S. Collins


James M. Anderson, M.D., Ph.D.

Deputy Director for Program Coordination, Planning, and Strategic Initiatives

Lawrence A. Tabak, D.D.S., Ph.D.

Deputy Director

Michael M. Gottesman, M.D.

Deputy Director

Michael S. Lauer, M.D.

Deputy Director

Further reading


Documentaries, videos and podcasts





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