National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)

Until May 19, 1972, the National Institute of Arthritis and Metabolic Diseases; until June 23, 1981, the National Institute of Arthritis, Metabolism, and Digestive Diseases; and until April 8, 1986, the National Institute of Arthritis, Diabetes, and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.

Mission

The mission of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) is to conduct and support medical research and research training and to disseminate science-based information on diabetes and other endocrine and metabolic diseases; digestive diseases, nutritional disorders, and obesity; and kidney, urologic, and hematologic diseases, to improve people’s health and quality of life.

Overview

The NIDDK supports a wide range of medical research through grants to universities and other medical research institutions across the country. The Institute also supports government scientists who conduct basic, translational, and clinical research across a broad spectrum of research topics and serious, chronic diseases and conditions related to the Institute's mission. In addition, the NIDDK supports research training for students and scientists at various stages of their careers and a range of education and outreach programs to bring science-based information to patients and their families, health care professionals, and the public.

External research funded by the NIDDK is organized into three scientific program divisions

  • Diabetes, Endocrinology, and Metabolic Diseases
  • Digestive Diseases and Nutrition
  • Kidney, Urologic, and Hematologic Diseases

The NIDDK’s overarching principles in advancing research include

  • maintaining a vigorous, investigator-initiated research portfolio that supports cross-cutting science that can be broadly applied to many disease-specific research areas
  • supporting pivotal clinical studies and trials, with a focus on substantial participation of groups at highest risk
  • promoting a steady and diverse pool of talented new investigators
  • fostering exceptional research training and mentoring opportunities
  • ensuring that science-based health information reaches patients, their families, health care providers, and the public through communications and outreach

Important Events in NIDDK History

August 15, 1950—President Harry S. Truman signed the Omnibus Medical Research Act into law, establishing the National Institute of Arthritis and Metabolic Diseases (NIAMD) in the U.S. Public Health Service. The new Institute incorporated the laboratories of the Experimental Biology and Medicine Institute and expanded to include clinical investigation in rheumatic diseases, diabetes, and a number of metabolic, endocrine, and gastrointestinal diseases.

November 15, 1950—The National Advisory Arthritis and Metabolic Diseases Council held its first meeting and recommended approval of NIAMD's first grants.

1959—Dr. Arthur Kornberg, former chief of the Institute's enzyme and metabolism section, shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with another scientist for synthesizing nucleic acid.

1961—Laboratory-equipped mobile trailer units began an epidemiological study of arthritis among the Blackfeet and Pima Indians in Montana and Arizona, respectively.

October 16, 1968—Dr. Marshall W. Nirenberg of the National Heart Institute shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with two other scientists. Dr. Nirenberg reported his celebrated partial cracking of the genetic code while an NIAMD scientist.

November 1970—The Institute celebrated its 20th anniversary.

May 19, 1972—The Institute's name was changed to the National Institute of Arthritis, Metabolism, and Digestive Diseases (NIAMDD).

October 1972— Dr. Christian B. Anfinsen, chief of the Institute's Laboratory of Chemical Biology, shared the Nobel Prize in Chemistry with two other American scientists for demonstrating one of the most important simplifying concepts of molecular biology: that the three-dimensional conformation of a native protein is determined by the chemistry of its amino acid sequence. A significant part of the research cited by the award was performed while Anfinsen was with the NIH.

September 1973—The creation of the first Diabetes-Endocrinology Research Centers marked the beginning of the Institute’s Diabetes Centers Program.

November 1975—After nine months of investigation into the epidemiology and nature of diabetes mellitus and public hearings throughout the United States, the National Commission on Diabetes delivered its report, the Long-Range Plan to Combat Diabetes, to Congress. Recommendations included expanding and coordinating diabetes and related research programs; creating a diabetes research and training centers program; accelerating diabetes health care, education, and control programs; and establishing a National Diabetes Advisory Board.

April 1976—The National Commission on Arthritis and Related Musculoskeletal Diseases issued The Arthritis Plan. This report to Congress called for increased arthritis research and training programs, multipurpose arthritis centers, epidemiologic studies, and data systems in arthritis, a National Arthritis Information Service, and a National Arthritis Advisory Board.

October 1976—Dr. Baruch S. Blumberg shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with another scientist for their research on infectious diseases. Dr. Blumberg discovered the hepatitis B virus protein, the "Australia antigen," in 1963 while at the Institute. This advance has proven to be a scientific and clinical landmark in detecting and controlling viral hepatitis and led to the development of preventive measures against hepatitis and liver cancer.

April 19, 1977—The NIH director established a trans-NIH program for diabetes, with the NIAMDD taking lead responsibility.

September 1977—More than $5 million in grants was awarded to five institutions to establish Diabetes Research and Training Centers.

October 1977—In response to the recommendation of the National Commission on Diabetes, the National Diabetes Data Group was established within the Institute to collect, analyze, and disseminate diabetes data to scientific and public health policy and planning associations.

December 1977—Institute grantees Drs. Roger C.L. Guillemin and Andrew V. Schally shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with a third scientist. Guillemin's and Schally's prizes were for discoveries related to the brain's production of peptide hormones.

1978—In response to congressional language, the NIDDK created the National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse to increase knowledge and understanding about diabetes among people with these conditions and their families, health professionals, and the public.

January 1979—The National Commission on Digestive Diseases issued the report, The National Long-Range Plan to Combat Digestive Diseases. Recommendations to Congress included establishing a National Digestive Diseases advisory board and information clearinghouse and emphasizing digestive diseases educational programs more in medical schools.

June 1980—In response to congressional language, the NIDDK created the National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse to increase knowledge and understanding about digestive diseases among people with these conditions and their families, health professionals, and the public.

September 1980—Dr. Joseph E. Rall, director of NIAMDD intramural research, became the first person at the NIH to be named to the distinguished executive rank in the Senior Executive Service. President Jimmy Carter presented the award in ceremonies at the White House on September 9.

October 15, 1980—NIAMDD celebrated its 30th anniversary.

June 23, 1981—The Institute was renamed the National Institute of Arthritis, Diabetes, and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIADDK).

April 1982—U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Richard S. Schweiker elevated the NIADDK's programs to division status, creating five extramural divisions and the Division of Intramural Research.

November 1982—Dr. Elizabeth Neufeld, chief of the NIADDK’s genetics and biochemistry branch, received the Albert Lasker Clinical Medical Research Award. She was cited, along with Dr. Roscoe O. Brady of the then-named National Institute of Neurological and Communicative Disorders and Stroke, for their contributions to the understanding and diagnosis of inherited diseases called mucopolysaccharide storage disorders.

November 1984—Six institutions were funded to establish the Silvio O. Conte Digestive Diseases Research Core Centers. The research centers investigate the underlying causes, diagnoses, treatments, and prevention of digestive diseases.

April 8, 1986—The Institute's Division of Arthritis, Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases became the core of the new National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. The NIADDK was renamed the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK).

June 3, 1986—The National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Advisory Board was established to formulate the long-range plan to combat kidney and urologic diseases.

1987—In response to congressional language, the NIDDK created the National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse to increase knowledge and understanding about diseases of the kidneys and urologic system among people with these conditions and their families, health care professionals, and the public.

August 1, 1987—Six institutions were funded to establish the George M. O'Brien Kidney and Urology Research Centers.

December 1987—In response to congressional language on the fiscal year (FY) 1988 appropriation for the NIDDK, the Institute established a program of cystic fibrosis research centers.

March 1990—The National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Advisory Board issued its report, Long-Range Plan: Window on the 21st Century.

September 16, 1990—The NIDDK celebrated its 40th anniversary.

June 1991—The NIDDK Advisory Council established the National Task Force on the Prevention and Treatment of Obesity to synthesize current science on preventing and treating obesity and to develop statements about topics of clinical importance based on critical analyses of the scientific literature.

September 30, 1992—Three Obesity/Nutrition Research Centers were established, along with an extramural animal models core to breed genetically obese rats for obesity and diabetes research.

October 12, 1992— Institute grantees Drs. Edwin G. Krebs and Edmond H. Fischer were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for their work on reversible protein phosphorylation. At the time of the award, the scientists had been receiving continuous NIDDK grant support since 1951 and 1956, respectively.

October 30, 1992—In response to congressional language, the NIDDK initiated a program to establish gene therapy research centers with emphasis on cystic fibrosis.

November 1, 1993—The functions of the NIH Division of Nutrition Research Coordination, including those of the NIH Nutrition Coordinating Committee, were transferred to the NIDDK.

June 1994—In response to congressional language, NIDDK established the Weight-control Information Network (WIN), an information service about obesity, weight management and nutrition.

October 10, 1994—Drs. Martin Rodbell and Alfred G. Gilman received the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for discovering G-proteins, a key component in the signaling system that regulates cellular activity. Dr. Rodbell discovered the signal transmission function of GTP while a researcher at the then-named NIAMD.

June 22, 1997—Led by the NIDDK, the NIH and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced the creation of the National Diabetes Education Program to promote the findings of the multi-center Diabetes Control and Complications Trial (DCCT).

July 18, 2000—The NIDDK created the National Kidney Disease Education Program to raise awareness of kidney disease and its risk factors and make educational resources available to consumers and health care providers.

June 2000—The NIDDK created the Office of Minority Health Research Coordination to develop NIDDK’s Minority Health Strategic Plan to reduce minority health disparities.

November 16, 2000—The NIDDK celebrated its 50th anniversary.

June 2002—NIDDK created the Summer Internship Program, now called the Diversity Summer Research Training Program (DSRTP), to increase the number of students from backgrounds underrepresented in biomedical research to build a research pipeline in NIDDK mission areas.

November 2002—NIDDK created the Network of Minority Health Research Investigators to help increase the number of minority health researchers who compete for NIH research support in the fields of interest to NIDDK.

October 8, 2003—NIDDK grantee Dr. Peter Agre shared the Nobel Prize in Chemistry with another scientist for studies of channels in cell membranes. Agre discovered aquaporins, proteins that move water molecules through the cell membrane.

October 4, 2004—Dr. Richard Axel, once an intramural research fellow under NIDDK’s Dr. Gary Felsenfeld, shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with another scientist for discovering a large family of receptors selectively expressed in cells that detect specific odors.

October 6, 2004—Longtime NIDDK grantees Drs. Irwin A. Rose and Avram Hershko shared the Nobel Prize in Chemistry with another scientist for discovering ubiquitin-mediated protein degradation inside the cell.

October 2007—Institute grantee Dr. Oliver Smithies shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with two other scientists for discovering principles for introducing specific gene modifications in mice by using embryonic stem cells.

2010—The NIDDK celebrated its 60th anniversary.

September 2010—NIDDK grantee Dr. Jeffrey Friedman and former grantee Dr. Douglas Coleman won the Albert Lasker Basic Medical Research Award for discovering the hormone leptin, which plays a key role in regulating energy intake and energy expenditure.

October 3, 2011—NIDDK grantee Dr. Bruce Beutler shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with NIH grantee Dr. Jules Hoffman for their discoveries concerning the activation of innate immunity. NIH grantee Dr. Ralph Steinman also shared the award posthumously for his discovery of the dendritic cell and its role in adaptive immunity.

December 2011—The journal Science named an HIV-prevention research study led by NIDDK grantee Dr. Myron Cohen the 2011 Breakthrough of the Year. The study found that people infected with HIV reduced the risk of transmitting the virus to their sexual partners by taking oral antiretroviral medicines when their immune systems were relatively healthy.

April 29, 2012—The Treatment Options for type 2 Diabetes in Adolescents and Youth (TODAY) study results appeared in the New England Journal of Medicine, marking the first major comparative effectiveness trial for the treatment of type 2 diabetes in young people. The NIDDK-funded study found that combined therapy with metformin and rosiglitazone was superior to metformin alone.

September 21, 2012—Dr. Thomas E. Starzl, a longtime NIDDK grantee, received the Lasker-DeBakey Clinical Medical Research Award, shared with another scientist for his work developing liver transplantation, an intervention that has restored normal life to thousands of people with end-stage liver disease. 

October 2012—Dr. Robert J. Lefkowitz, who trained at NIDDK as a clinical associate in the Clinical Endocrinology Branch, won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for studies of protein receptors that let body cells sense and respond to outside signals.

October 2013—NIDDK grantee Dr. James Rothman shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with fellow NIH grantees Drs. Randy W. Schekman and Thomas C. Südhof for their discoveries of machinery regulating vesicle traffic, a major transport system in our cells. 

August 1, 2015—NIDDK established the Office of Nutrition Research, replacing the NIH Division of Nutrition Research Coordination, to assist in leading a trans-NIH group to strategically plan new initiatives for NIH nutrition research.

September 2016—NIDDK grantee Dr. Gregg L. Semenza shared the Albert Lasker Basic Medical Research Award with NIH grantee Dr. William G. Kaelin Jr. and another scientist for their discovery of the pathway by which cells from humans and most animals sense and adapt to changes in oxygen availability—a process essential for survival.

March 2018—The NIDDK opened the Office of Clinical Research Support (OCRS), a virtual office to oversee and coordinate the development of policies and procedures of NIDDK-funded clinical studies.

September 2018 –Dr. Adriaan “Ad” Bax, a section chief in NIDDK’s Laboratory of Chemical Physics, received the Robert A. Welch Award in Chemistry for contributions to transforming NMR spectroscopy for the study of the structure and dynamics of biological macromolecules.

October 7, 2019—NIDDK grantee Dr. Gregg L. Semenza shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with NIH grantee Dr. William G. Kaelin Jr. and another scientist for their discoveries of how cells sense and adapt to oxygen availability.

NIDDK Legislative Chronology

December 11, 1947—The Experimental Biology and Medicine Institute was established under Section 202 of Public Law (P.L.) 78-410.

August 15, 1950—The Omnibus Medical Research Act (P.L. 81-692) established the National Institute of Arthritis and Metabolic Diseases (NIAMD) to "... conduct researches relating to the cause, prevention, and methods of diagnosis and treatment of arthritis and rheumatism and other metabolic diseases, to assist and foster such researches and other activities by public and private agencies, and promote the coordination of all such researches, and to provide training in matters relating to such disease..." Section 431 also authorized the U.S. Surgeon General to establish a national advisory council.

May 19, 1972—P.L. 92-305 re-emphasized digestive diseases research by changing the name of the Institute to the National Institute of Arthritis, Metabolism, and Digestive Diseases (NIAMDD) and by designating a digestive diseases committee within the Institute's National Advisory Council.

July 23, 1974—The National Diabetes Mellitus Research and Education Act (P.L. 93-354) was signed into law. The National Commission on Diabetes, authorized by this act, was chartered on September 17, 1974. The act authorized diabetes research and training centers, and an intergovernmental diabetes coordinating committee that included representatives from the NIAMDD and six other NIH Institutes.

January 1975—The National Arthritis Act of 1974 (P.L. 93-640) was signed into law to further research, education, and training in the field of connective tissue diseases. The act authorized the creation of a national commission, centers for research and training in arthritis and rheumatic diseases, a data bank, and an overall plan to investigate the epidemiology, etiology, control, and prevention of these disorders.

October 1976—The Arthritis, Diabetes, and Digestive Diseases Amendments of 1976 (P.L. 94-562) established the National Diabetes Advisory Board, charged with advising Congress and the Health, Education, and Welfare (HEW) Secretary on implementing the Long-Range Plan to Combat Diabetes developed by the National Commission on Diabetes. The law also established the National Commission on Digestive Diseases to investigate the incidence, duration, mortality rates, and social and economic impact of digestive diseases.

December 1980—Title II of the Health Programs Extension Act of 1980, P.L. 96-538, changed the Institute's name to the National Institute of Arthritis, Diabetes, and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. The Act also established the National Digestive Diseases Advisory Board. The law authorized the National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse, the Diabetes Data Group, and the National Digestive Diseases Information and Education Clearinghouse. In addition, it reauthorized advisory boards for arthritis and diabetes research.

November 20, 1985—The Health Research Extension Act of 1985 (P.L. 99-158) changed the Institute’s name to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. The act also established the National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Advisory Board. The law gave parallel special authorities to all Institute operating divisions, including authorization of the National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse; National Kidney, Urologic, and Hematologic Diseases Coordinating Committee; National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Data System; National Digestive Diseases Data System; Kidney and Urologic Diseases Research Centers; and Digestive Diseases Research Centers.

June 10, 1993—The NIH Revitalization Act of 1993 (P.L. 103-43) established the NIDDK as the lead Institute in nutritional disorders and obesity, including the formation of a research and training centers program on nutritional disorders and obesity. The act also provided for the directors of the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, National Institute on Aging, National Institute of Dental Research, and the NIDDK to expand and intensify research and related programs concerning osteoporosis, Paget's disease, and related bone disorders.

July 25, 1997—A House report accompanying H.R. 2264 and Senate report with S. 1061, FY 1998 appropriations bills for Labor/HHS/Education, urged NIH and NIDDK to establish a diabetes research working group to develop a comprehensive plan for NIH-funded diabetes research that would recommend future initiatives and directions. Dr. C. Ronald Kahn, diabetes research working group chairman, presented "Conquering Diabetes, A Strategic Plan for the 21st Century" to Congress on March 23, 1999.

August 5, 1997—The Balanced Budget Act of 1997 (P.L. 105-33), as immediately amended by the Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997 (P.L. 105-34), established a Special Statutory Funding Program for Type 1 Diabetes Research (now Section 330B of the Public Health Service Act). This legislation provided $30 million per year for FY 1998 through FY 2002. (The program has been extended and has had funding increased in subsequent years.) This funding program augments regularly appropriated funds HHS receives for diabetes research through the Labor-HHS-Education appropriations subcommittees. The NIDDK, through authority granted by the HHS Secretary, leads in the planning, administration, and evaluation of these funds. In parallel with the Special Statutory Funding Program for Type 1 Diabetes Research, P.L. 105-33 also established the Special Diabetes Program for Indians, which is administered by the Indian Health Service.

October 17, 2000—Title IV, Section 402 of the Children’s Health Act of 2000 (P.L. 106-310) entitled "Reducing the Burden of Diabetes Among Children and Youth" specified that the NIH conduct long-term epidemiology studies, support regional clinical research centers, and provide a national prevention effort relative to type 1 diabetes.

December 21, 2000—The FY 2001 Consolidated Appropriations Act (P.L. 106-554) increased funding for the Special Statutory Funding Program for Type 1 Diabetes Research to $100 million per year for FY 2001 and FY 2002 and extended the program at a level of $100 million for FY 2003.

December 17, 2002—The Public Health Service Act amendment relating to diabetes research (P.L. 107-360) extended and augmented the Special Statutory Funding Program for Type 1 Diabetes Research. The law provided $150 million per year for type 1 diabetes research from FY 2004 through FY 2008.

December 8, 2003—Title VII, Subtitle D, Section 733 of the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003 (P.L. 108-173) authorized the NIDDK to conduct a pancreatic islet transplantation clinical trial that includes Medicare beneficiaries. Medicare would cover routine costs, transplantation, and appropriate related items and services for Medicare beneficiaries enrolled in the trial.

October 25, 2004—The Pancreatic Islet Cell Transplantation Act of 2004 (P.L. 108-362) amended the Public Health Service Act to increase the supply of pancreatic islet cells for research and provide better coordination of federal efforts and information on islet cell transplantation. A provision of this law specified that the annual reports prepared by the NIDDK-led Diabetes Mellitus Interagency Coordinating Committee include an assessment of the federal activities and programs related to pancreatic islet transplantation.

September 2004—The reports accompanying the FY 2005 Senate and House Labor, HHS, and Education appropriations bills (Senate Report 108-345 and House Report 108-636) called on the NIH and HHS to establish a national commission on digestive diseases to develop a long-range research plan. The NIH director subsequently established the National Commission on Digestive Diseases under NIDDK leadership in August 2005.

December 29, 2007—The Medicare, Medicaid, and SCHIP Extension Act of 2007 (P.L. 110-173) extended funding for the Special Statutory Funding Program for Type 1 Diabetes Research. The law provided $150 million for type 1 diabetes research in FY 2009.

July 15, 2008—The Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act of 2008 (P.L. 110-275) extended funding for the Special Statutory Funding Program for Type 1 Diabetes Research. The law provided $150 million per year for type 1 diabetes research in FY 2010 and FY 2011.

February 17, 2009—The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009 (P.L. 111-5) provided the NIH with a two-year infusion of funding. The NIDDK developed a plan to use its portion of the ARRA funds to meet the stimulus goals set forth in the Recovery Act. This funding supported a range of biomedical research efforts across the Institute's research mission.

June 15, 2010—H. Res. 1444, a bipartisan resolution, was introduced recognizing the 60th anniversary of the NIDDK.

December 15, 2010—The Medicare and Medicaid Extenders Act of 2010 (P.L. 111-309) extended funding for the Special Statutory Funding Program for Type 1 Diabetes Research. The law provided $150 million per year for type 1 diabetes research in FY 2012 and FY 2013.

January 2, 2013—The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (P.L. 112-240) extended funding for the Special Statutory Funding Program for Type 1 Diabetes Research. The law provided $150 million for type 1 diabetes research in FY 2014.

April 1, 2014—The Protecting Access to Medicare Act of 2014 (P.L. 113-93) extended the Special Statutory Funding Program for Type 1 Diabetes Research. The law provided $150 million for type 1 diabetes research in FY 2015.

April 16, 2015—The Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (P.L. 114-10) extended the Special Statutory Funding Program for Type 1 Diabetes Research.  The law provided $150 million per year for type 1 diabetes research in FY 2016 and FY 2017.

February 9, 2018—The Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 (P.L. 115-123) extended the Special Statutory Funding Program for Type 1 Diabetes Research.  The law provided $150 million per year for type 1 diabetes research in FY 2018 and FY 2019.

Biographical Sketch of NIDDK Director Griffin P. Rodgers, M.D., M.A.C.P.

Photo of NIDDK Director Griffin P. Rodgers, M.D., M.A.C.P. Griffin P. Rodgers, M.D., M.A.C.P. NIDDK/NIH

Dr. Griffin P. Rodgers was named director of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)—one of the National Institutes of Health (NIH)—on April 1, 2007. He had served as NIDDK’s acting director since March 2006 and had been the Institute’s deputy director since January 2001. As the director of NIDDK, Dr. Rodgers provides scientific leadership and manages a staff of more than 630 employees and a budget of nearly $2.25 billion.

Dr. Rodgers received his undergraduate, graduate, and medical degrees from Brown University in Providence, R.I. He completed his residency and chief residency in internal medicine at Barnes Hospital and the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. His fellowship training in hematology was in a joint program of the NIH with George Washington University and the Washington Veterans Administration Medical Center. In addition to his medical and research training, he earned an MBA, with a focus on the business of medicine/science, from Johns Hopkins University in 2005.

As a research investigator, Dr. Rodgers is widely recognized for his contributions to the development of the first effective—and now FDA approved—therapy for sickle cell anemia. He was a principal investigator in clinical trials to develop therapy for patients with sickle cell disease and also performed basic research that focused on understanding the molecular basis of how certain drugs induce gamma-globin gene expression. More recently, he and his collaborators have reported on a modified blood stem-cell transplant regimen that is highly effective in reversing sickle cell disease in adults and is associated with relatively low toxicity. He has been honored for his research with numerous awards including the 1998 Richard and Hinda Rosenthal Foundation Award, the 2000 Arthur S. Flemming Award, the Legacy of Leadership Award in 2002, and a Mastership from the American College of Physicians in 2005. In 2018 Dr. Rodgers was elected as a fellow to the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the Royal College of Physicians (London).

Dr. Rodgers has been an invited professor at medical schools and hospitals both nationally and internationally. He has been honored with many named lectureships at American medical centers and has published more than 250 original research articles, reviews, and book chapters; has edited four books and monographs; and holds three patents.

Dr. Rodgers is a member of the American Society of Hematology, the American Society of Clinical Investigation, the Association of American Physicians, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the National Academy of Medicine, among others. He served as Governor to the American College of Physicians and as Chair of the Hematology Subspecialty Board and a member of the American Board of Internal Medicine Board of Directors.

Dr. Rodgers serves as a chair, co-chair, and member of numerous high-level trans-NIH and HHS scientific and administrative committees. He is chair of the NIH Nutrition Research Task Force, co-chair of the NIH Obesity Research Task Force, and serves on the Executive Committee leading the Accelerating Medicines Partnership. He also co-leads the Illuminating the Druggable Genome program of the NIH Common Fund, and is a member of the NIH Steering Committee, NIH-Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Joint Leadership Council, and NIH-Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Leadership Council, among others. 

NIDDK Directors

Name In Office from To
William Henry Sebrell, Jr. August 15, 1950 October 1, 1950
Russell M. Wilder March 6, 1951 June 30, 1953
Floyd S. Daft October 1, 1953 May 3, 1962
G. Donald Whedon November 23, 1962 September 30, 1981
Lester B. Salans June 17, 1982 June 30, 1984
Mortimer B. Lipsett January 7, 1985 September 4, 1986
Phillip Gorden September 5, 1986 November 14, 1999
Allen M. Spiegel November 15, 1999 March 3, 2006
Griffin P. Rodgers April 1, 2007 Present

Programs

Division of Intramural Research

The NIDDK Intramural Research Program (IRP) conducts biomedical research and training at its laboratories and clinical facilities in Bethesda, Maryland, and Phoenix, Arizona, related to diabetes, endocrine and metabolic diseases—including liver disease and nutrition—obesity, and kidney, urologic, and hematologic diseases. The research conducted in the IRP spans the breadth of modern biomedical investigation, from basic science to clinical studies. 

The division includes 10 branches, eight laboratories, and four offices, which together focus on issues of technology transfer, fellow recruitment and career development, and overall management of the division’s basic and clinical research efforts. In addition, seven core facilities provide centralized scientific collaborative and support services to the laboratories and branches.

The intramural branches conduct basic, translational, and clinical biomedical research related to diabetes mellitus, endocrine, bone and metabolic diseases; digestive diseases, including liver diseases and nutritional disorders; kidney diseases; and hematologic diseases. The NIDDK’s intramural labs are involved in fundamental research in biophysics; cell biology; chemical biology and medicinal chemistry; developmental biology; genetics, pathogenesis, and novel therapies of disease; molecular biology; signal transduction; and structural biology.

Division of Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolic Diseases (DEM)

The Division of Diabetes, Endocrinology, and Metabolic Diseases provides research funding and support for basic and clinical research in the areas of type 1 and type 2 diabetes and other metabolic disorders, including cystic fibrosis; endocrinology and endocrine disorders; obesity, neuroendocrinology, and energy balance; and development, metabolism, and basic biology of liver, fat, and endocrine tissues. DEM also provides funding for the training and career development of individuals committed to academic and clinical research careers in these areas.

The Division of Diabetes, Endocrinology, and Metabolic Diseases supports research in

For a list of all NIDDK programs, including these, visit Research Programs and Contacts.

Diabetes Mellitus Interagency Coordinating Committee

The Diabetes Mellitus Interagency Coordinating Committee (DMICC) coordinates diabetes research and activities across the NIH and other federal programs. The DEM division director chairs the DMICC, which includes representatives from all federal departments and agencies whose programs involve health functions and responsibilities relevant to diabetes and its complications.

National Diabetes Data Group

The DEM's National Diabetes Data Group serves as the federal lead for collecting, analyzing, and sharing data on diabetes and its complications. The group draws on the expertise of the research, medical, and lay communities to support its data initiatives.

Health Education and Information

The division reviews and supports dissemination of health education and information for patients, health professionals, and the public. For more information, see "Office of Communications and Public Liaison."

Division of Digestive Diseases and Nutrition (DDN)

The Division of Digestive Diseases and Nutrition supports research related to digestive diseases, including the alimentary tract, liver and pancreas, nutrition and obesity. The programs include basic, translational and clinical research, research training, and career development. DDN also promotes public awareness and education about digestive diseases and related conditions.

The Division of Digestive Diseases and Nutrition supports research in

For a list of all NIDDK programs, including these, visit Research Programs and Contacts.

Health Education and Information

The division reviews and supports dissemination of health education and information for patients, health professionals, and the public. For more information, see “Office of Communications and Public Liaison.

Division of Kidney, Urologic, and Hematologic Diseases (KUH)

The Division of Kidney, Urologic, and Hematologic Diseases provides research funding and support for basic, translational, and clinical research studies of the kidney, urinary tract, and disorders of the blood and blood-forming organs. The division also provides funding for training and career development of people committed to academic and clinical research in these areas. 

The Division of Kidney, Urology and Hematology supports research in

For a list of all NIDDK programs, including these, visit Research Programs and Contacts.

Kidney Interagency Coordinating Committee

The Kidney Interagency Coordinating Committee (KICC) consists of Federal representatives involved in chronic kidney disease (CKD) programs and activities. KICC's purpose is to encourage communication and collaboration to shape a more coordinated Federal response to CKD. 

Urologic Interagency Coordinating Committee

The Urologic Interagency Coordinating Committee (UICC) consists of Federal representatives involved in programs and activities relating to urologic health. UICC's purpose is to encourage communication and collaboration to shape a more coordinated Federal response to urologic conditions.

Health Education and Information

The division reviews and supports dissemination of health education and information for patients, health professionals, and the public. For more information, see “Office of Communications and Public Liaison.

Division of Extramural Activities (DEA)

The Division of Extramural Activities provides leadership, oversight, tools, and guidance to manage the NIDDK's grants policies and operations, including efforts related to the scientific peer review process for assessing grant applications. The DEA also coordinates the NIDDK's committee management activities and Advisory Council meetings, and performs and coordinates programmatic analyses and evaluation activities.

The DEA is organized into four primary components.

  • The Grants Management Branch is the focal point for all business-related activities associated with the negotiation, award, and administration of grants and cooperative agreements within the NIDDK.
  • The Scientific Review Branch coordinates the initial scientific peer review of applications submitted in response to Request for Applications (RFAs), training and career awards, program projects, multicenter clinical trials, and research contracts, including Loan Repayment Program applications. Most R01s, fellowship, and SBIR/STTR grant applications are reviewed in the Center for Scientific Review.
  • The Office of Research Evaluation and Operations (OREO) oversees and coordinates disease coding and reporting for the NIDDK extramural program, manages the Early Notification System and NIH Guide publication process associated with NIDDK Funding Opportunity Announcements and Notices, and supports NIDDK Advisory Council activities. The office also facilitates harmonization of activities among NIDDK's four extramural divisions and coordinates or performs special projects at the request of the NIDDK leadership. 
  • The Committee Management Office coordinates the administrative details of all of NIDDK’s meetings that operate under the Federal Advisory Committee Act. These meetings include peer review meetings to review grant applications, meetings of the NIDDK Advisory Council, and meetings of the NIDDK Board of Scientific Counselors to review components of the Intramural Research Program. The Office services NIDDK and serves as a service center for NIA and NIGMS. 

NIDDK Office of the Director

The Office of the Director provides scientific and administrative leadership for the Institute, including policy guidance, strategic program development and evaluation, and overall operational and administrative coordination.

The Office of the Director also manages the following research support programs:

Executive Office (EO)

The NIDDK Executive Office is the focal point for the Institute’s administrative infrastructure and functions.  The office provides strategic leadership, direction, oversight, and consultation on critical business and management operations and partners with the scientists and program staff in support of the NIDDK mission.  The office oversees administrative management, financial management, acquisitions and purchasing, ethics, information technology, and workforce development and planning.  It also develops and implements administrative policies, procedures, and risk management programs.

Office of Minority Health Research Coordination (OMHRC)

The NIDDK director created the Office of Minority Health Research Coordination (OMHRC) to address diseases and disorders that disproportionately affect minority populations. The OMHRC monitors implementation of the Institute's strategic plan for health disparities and builds on the partnership with the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities at the NIH. The OMHRC also develops initiatives to train new and early career investigators who are underrepresented in biomedical research. OMHRC also tracks and evaluates the Institute’s progress in training underrepresented racial and ethnic minorities in biomedical research.

Office of Nutrition Research (ONR)

The NIDDK Office of Nutrition Research leads nutrition research at NIDDK and collaboratively across NIH institutes. The office participates in strategic planning, portfolio analysis, budget and resource allocation, and assessment of research needs and opportunities that fall within the mission of NIDDK and the NIH. Strategic planning includes developing new NIH research initiatives in nutrition research. ONR acts on behalf of NIH as an interagency point of contact for nutrition research. 

ONR manages three Nutrition Research Committees and Working Groups 

Office of Obesity Research

The NIDDK Office of Obesity Research coordinates obesity-related research within the NIDDK and carries out its functions through the NIDDK Obesity Research Working Group. The co-directors represent the two divisions primarily responsible for obesity-related extramural research: DDN and DEM.

The Obesity Research Working Group includes representatives of DDN, DEM, KUH, the NIDDK Review Branch, the Office of Scientific Program and Policy Analysis (OSPPA), and the Office of Communications and Public Liaison (OCPL). The working group

  • provides a forum for sharing and coordinating trans-NIDDK and trans-NIH obesity research activities
  • helps the NIDDK director identify research opportunities, initiatives, and advances
  • identifies and plans workshops and conferences
  • prepares obesity-related reports and inquiries

Office of Communications and Public Liaison (OCPL)

The NIDDK Office of Communications and Public Liaison translates, explains, and promotes NIDDK-related research. The OCPL responds to queries from the public and the media and reaches out to broad and targeted audiences with health awareness and prevention messages. OCPL provides

  • health information (as congressionally authorized by the Public Health Service Act) to facilitate and enhance the knowledge and understanding of NIDDK topics for patients, health professionals, and the public
  • media inquiry response for reporters seeking information from NIDDK, including interviews with scientists
  • means to contact us with questions or requests

Office of Scientific Program and Policy Analysis (OSPPA)

The NIDDK Office of Scientific Program and Policy Analysis coordinates, analyzes, and writes scientific program reports, briefing materials, and other documents, including the annual report, NIDDK Recent Advances & Emerging Opportunities, available on the Institute’s website. These documents present NIDDK’s scientific accomplishments and plans to public policy makers, including Congress; the scientific community; voluntary health organizations; and other audiences. OSPPA advises the NIDDK director and senior scientific management on strategic planning, assessment approaches and science policy issues. OSPPA also serves as a liaison for dialogue with representatives of professional and patient advocacy groups and congressional staff.

Technology Advancement Office (TAO)

The NIDDK Technology Advancement Office reviews, drafts, and negotiates various  transactional agreements for members of the global scientific community who wish to access research materials developed by NIDDK scientists and/or collaborate with NIDDK on a clinical trial or other research. In addition, TAO evaluates invention disclosures provided by the Institute’s research staff, makes determinations regarding the filing of patent applications on discoveries and inventions, and assists in product development strategy.

This page last reviewed on January 3, 2020