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January 19, 1994

New NIH Director Faces Filling Top Posts, Focus on Intramural Research

JAMA. 1994;271(3):175-176. doi:10.1001/jama.1994.03510270013005

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HAROLD VARMUS, MD, in one of his first public appearances after being confirmed as director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Bethesda, Md, demonstrated his concern for the biomedical research community and a sensitivity to issues likely to capture the interest of Congress, to which he is responsible. After hearing him summarize the issues facing the agency at a meeting of the NIH Director's Advisory Committee, one scientist says that Varmus brings to his new post "a refreshing style and wit."

He is likely to need both in the coming months.

Vacancies, Research Scrutiny  The new director must fill several outstanding vacancies at the NIH, including two director's posts—those of the National Institute on Drug Abuse and the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. The need to find capable administrators is "high on my agenda," Varmus says. Search committees are at present reviewing candidates.The directorship of the

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