February 2002

From NIH/Fogarty International Center

Fogarty International Center announces new global health research initiative program for foreign investigators

National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland -- The Fogarty International Center (FIC) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), together with eight NIH partners, announces a new Global Health Research Initiative Program (GRIP) for New Foreign Investigators to promote the productive re-entry of young NIH-trained foreign investigators from the developing world to their home countries. FIC's partners are the National Institute on Aging (NIA), the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), the National Eye Institute (NEI), the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), the Office of Behavioral and Social Science Research (OBSSR), the Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS), and the Office of Research on Women's Health (ORWH). The current combined financial commitment from FIC and its partners is $1 million per year to support grants of $50,000 annually for up to five years.

This grant program is part of a broader effort by FIC to enhance scientific research infrastructure in developing countries, while supporting research on critical global health issues, including AIDS, women's health, the impact of environmental pollution, and the growing burden of neurological and mental illness.

"There has been a long-standing need for individuals who train in the United States to get help in receiving research support when they return to their home countries," said FIC Director Gerald T. Keusch, M.D., on behalf of the NIH partners. "FIC is working with U.S. and international colleagues to strengthen research infrastructure in the developing world," he added. "GRIP is an important part of this process, combating "brain drain" and ensuring that developing countries do not lose the benefit of talented scientists, some of whom decide not to return home after their training. The GRIP aims to provide support on a competitive basis to assist well-trained young investigators to contribute to health care advances in their home countries."

The GRIP will provide partial salaries to the junior researcher returning home, equivalent to similar professionals in the home country, and will provide support for research projects. Developing country scientists supported by this grant are expected to continue to pursue independent and productive careers, including expert training and consultation and/or research on scientific issues within their home institutions. Through this program, junior scientists will compete for funds through a peer-reviewed process and will pursue promising independent research of benefit to their home countries and the world.

"In developing this program we consulted with young scientists from the developing world to hear their views on needs and opportunities on their return home," said FIC Deputy Director Sharon Hrynkow, Ph.D. "The resulting program allows young investigators to gain grant support and to have a level of control over their early careers in ways previously unavailable to them," she added. "With the new program, FIC expects to see increases in numbers of young scientists returning to their countries and, importantly, continuing of the international collaborations begun in the United States."

Developing country scientists currently or recently supported through FIC international training programs in global health and through the NIH Visiting Program are eligible to apply. Michael Gottesman, M.D., NIH Deputy Director for Intramural Research noted that "the GRIP will continue to build bridges between NIH-supported scientists and their colleagues in the developing world. This new opportunity for young scientists who have been trained and mentored at NIH or at NIH-supported institutions in the United States is an important step forward in enhancing research capacity around the world."

Applications for the Global Health Research Initiative Program for Foreign Investigators are due by April 19, 2002. The Request For Applications for this program may be found at: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-TW-02-002.html.

FIC is the international component of the NIH. It promotes and supports scientific discovery internationally and mobilizes resources to reduce disparities in global health. NIH is an agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Press releases, fact sheets, and other FIC-related materials are available at http://www.nih.gov/fic.











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