Greenberg Named NIGMS Acting Director

Release Date:

Judith H. Greenberg, Ph.D., today was named acting director of the National Institute of General Medical Sciences by Ruth L. Kirschstein, M.D., acting director of the National Institutes of Health. Greenberg will assume her duties on May 3, 2002 upon the departure of current NIGMS director Marvin Cassman, Ph.D.

"NIGMS has recently embarked on a number of exciting new initiatives, including structural genomics, pharmacogenetics, integrative and collaborative approaches to research, and complex biological systems," said Greenberg. "I am committed to seeing these and our other activities continue to flourish, and I am fortunate to have the help of the institute's talented and exceptional staff."

Greenberg is a developmental biologist who has directed the NIGMS Division of Genetics and Developmental Biology since 1988. In fiscal year 2001, the division's budget was $428 million.

Since 1984, Greenberg has also been the project officer of the Human Genetic Cell Repository, which provides cell lines and DNA samples to scientists studying genetic diseases. She has been instrumental in overseeing the evolution of the collection to anticipate and meet the needs of the human genetics research community.

Her strong interest in bioethical issues related to genetics led Greenberg to hold the First Community Consultation on the Responsible Collection and Use of Samples for Genetic Research in September 2000. In addition, she chaired an NIH working group on community consultation in genetic research, which will soon issue a document entitled "Points to Consider When Planning a Genetic Study that Involves Members of Named Populations."

Greenberg has performed several details in the Office of the Director, NIH. In 1995, then-NIH director Harold Varmus, M.D., appointed her to serve as executive secretary of the Panel to Assess the NIH Investment in Research on Gene Therapy. On August 10, 2001, following President Bush's decision on federal funding for embryonic stem cell research, Kirschstein appointed Greenberg to establish the NIH Human Embryonic Stem Cell Registry.

Greenberg has served on numerous NIGMS, trans-NIH, and interagency committees. She was the NIH program representative to the Federal Demonstration Partnership from 1991 to 1998 and was a member of its executive committee from 1996 to 1998.

Prior to joining NIGMS as a program administrator in 1981, Greenberg conducted research in the intramural program of what is now the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research. Her research focused on cell migration and differentiation in early embryonic development.

Greenberg received the Public Health Service Special Recognition Award in 1991 and the Presidential Meritorious Executive Award in 1999.

Greenberg earned a B.S. degree in biology from the University of Pittsburgh in 1967, an M.A. degree in biology from Boston University in 1970, and a Ph.D. degree in biology from Bryn Mawr College in 1972. She is a member of the Society for Developmental Biology and the American Society of Human Genetics.

NIGMS supports research and research training in the basic biomedical sciences. Institute-funded studies increase understanding of life processes and lay the foundation for advances in disease diagnosis, treatment, and prevention. In addition to genetics and developmental biology, the institute's programs encompass cell biology and biophysics; pharmacology, physiology, and biological chemistry; bioinformatics and computational biology; and minority biomedical research and training. NIGMS is marking its 40th anniversary in 2002.

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To schedule an interview with Dr. Judith Greenberg, call the NIGMS Office of Communications and Public Liaison at (301) 496-7301.

Please fax clips to (301) 402-0224.