NIH research director steps down

The US National Institutes of Health (NIH) deputy director for extramural research stepped down last month to take on a new post. Norka Ruiz Bravo, who had been in her position at the NIH for five years, vacated the role at the end of October and is now a special advisor to the NIH director (another position that linkurl:recently changed).;http://www.the-scientist.

By | November 13, 2008

The US National Institutes of Health (NIH) deputy director for extramural research stepped down last month to take on a new post. Norka Ruiz Bravo, who had been in her position at the NIH for five years, vacated the role at the end of October and is now a special advisor to the NIH director (another position that linkurl:recently changed).;http://www.the-scientist.com/blog/display/55050/ For the meantime she will be replaced by Salley Rockey, who has been in the Office of Extramural Research for three years. Ruiz Bravo had been at the head of many NIH initiatives, including the linkurl:hotly-debated public access mandate;http://www.the-scientist.com/blog/display/55009/ and the transition from paper to electronic grant submissions, according to an internal Email sent out by departing NIH director Elias Zerhouni. As the blog Pharmalot linkurl:reported today,;http://www.pharmalot.com/2008/11/amid-senate-probe-nih-changes-research-head/ Ruiz Bravo has also been questioned over the responsibility of the NIH for overseeing researchers' conflicts of interest. "I personally believe that the leadership of high level positions like that of the [deputy director of extramural research] should turn over every five or six years to make room for new perspectives and direction," Ruiz Bravo said in a linkurl:statement;http://nexus.od.nih.gov/nexus/nexus.aspx?ID=154&Month=10&Year=2008 posted on the extramural research Web site. She added that in light of linkurl:Zerhouni's departure;http://www.the-scientist.com/blog/display/55179/ it seemed like the right time to make the change.

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