National Institutes of Health Names Dr. Noel R. Rose as Chair of Autoimmune Diseases Coordinating Committee

2/6/2004

From: Stephanie Tonnesen of Carway Communications, Inc., 212-378-2020

DETROIT, Feb. 6 -- Dr. Noel R. Rose, a pioneer in the field of autoimmunity and autoimmune disease research, has been named chair of the National Institutes of Health's (NIH) Autoimmune Diseases Coordinating Committee (ADCC). Dr. Rose will be serving in this capacity under a joint agreement between the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), which is part of the NIH, and Johns Hopkins University.

As chair, Dr. Rose will serve as the principal adviser on autoimmunity and autoimmune disease research to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and Dr. Elias A. Zerhouni, director of NIH. In addition, Dr. Rose will oversee implementation of the NIH Autoimmune Diseases Research Plan - the nation's first-ever coordinated, collaborative effort to study the cause, incidence, diagnosis and treatment of autoimmune diseases, as well as educate the medical community and the general public. (Read the plan online at http://www.niaid.nih.gov/dait/pdf/ADCC_Report.pdf.)

In taking on this new position, Dr. Rose will step down as chair of the American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association's (AARDA) Scientific Advisory Committee.

"While we will miss Dr. Rose at AARDA, we are very proud of his accomplishments and look forward to working with him in his new role at the National Institutes of Health," said Virginia Ladd, executive director, AARDA, who sits on the NIH ADCC. "Dr. Rose's selection is cause for great celebration for all of us who are leading the fight against autoimmunity and autoimmune disease."

Dr. Rose also is a professor of pathology, molecular microbiology and immunology and director of the Center for Autoimmune Disease Research at Johns Hopkins University. His discoveries on thyroiditis ushered in the modern era of research on autoimmune diseases. He has devoted his scientific career to investigating the genetic, environmental and infectious factors that cause these devastating illnesses.

Established in 1998, the NIH ADCC is a body of government and outside experts which is housed under the NIAID. The committee facilitates collaboration among the NIH institutes, other federal agencies such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration, and private organizations. Since its inception, the committee has analyzed a wide range of ongoing and planned research programs in autoimmune diseases and developed crosscutting initiatives to address key aspects of autoimmunity.

There are more than 80 and another 40 suspected autoimmune diseases. They all share the same underlying cause - autoimmunity, the process by which the body's immune system turns on itself, attacking healthy organs, tissues and cells. Approximately 50 million Americans suffer from one or more autoimmune diseases. Of those, nearly 75 percent - or roughly 30 million - are women. Autoimmune diseases include lupus, multiple sclerosis, juvenile diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, scleroderma, Sjvgren's disease and Graves' disease.

The American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association is the nation's only organization dedicated to bringing a national focus to autoimmunity as a disease category and supporting collaborative research in order to find better treatments and a cure for all autoimmune diseases. For more information, please visit http://www.aarda.org or call 1-888-856-9433.











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