Research in the neurosciences is in the midst of a particularly exciting period of discovery, says Zach Hall, director of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), as scientists continue to learn more about the basic biology of such disorders as stroke, epilepsy, and degenerative conditions like Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, and Huntington's diseases.
Hall's institute has supported and participated in many of these landmark studies. Now the field stands poised on the brink of another, equally fruitful era, as investigators are turning their attention to ways of treating or preventing these maladies.
"Until now, all the major achievements in neurology were in diagnosis, but that is about to change," he predicts. "Because of the development of various molecular and cellular tools, and imaging technologies, we are going to be able to think about developing strategies for their treatment."
First established in 1950 as the National Institute of Neurological Diseases...