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NCCIH blogs about research developments related to complementary health practices. Check in regularly to keep up with the latest findings.

David Shurtleff, Ph.D.
July 25, 2018
David Shurtleff, Ph.D.

In this blog post, Acting NCCIH Director Dr. David Shurtleff discusses NCCIH and NIH plans that focus on the opioid epidemic and problems with which it is often associated: pain; chronic pain; substance misuse and addiction; and mental health problems. 

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Catherine M. Meyers, M.D.
November 03, 2017
Catherine Meyers, M.D.

In this blog post, Dr. Catherine Meyers discusses The Living Textbook, a researcher-friendly compendium of information for designing, planning, and implementing pragmatic clinical trials.

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Partap S. Khalsa, D.C., Ph.D.
October 04, 2017
Partap Khalsa, D.C., Ph.D.

NCCIH’s National Advisory Council to meet Friday, October 6, 2017; agenda includes panel titled “The National Pain Strategy and Federal Pain Research Strategy―Response to the Prescription Opioid Epidemic.”

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Lanay M. Mudd, Ph.D.
July 13, 2017
Lanay M. Mudd, Ph.D.

NIH’s Loan Repayment Programs can help some early-stage researchers repay their student loan debt. This blog post explains how NCCIH participates in the programs.

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David Shurtleff, Ph.D.
December 09, 2016
David Shurtleff, Ph.D.

Learn about the Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies® (BRAIN) Initiative, an effort to develop new tools and technologies to understand the healthy and diseased brain.

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Catherine M. Meyers, M.D.
July 25, 2016
Catherine Meyers, M.D.

A new NIH policy establishes the expectation that a single IRB of record will be used in the ethical review for NIH-funded multi-site, non-exempt human subjects research protocols.

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Linda Duffy
January 22, 2016
Linda Duffy, Ph.D.

Dr. Claire Fraser’s NIH lecture on the functional dynamics of the gut microbiome in health and disease is now available online. In her talk, Dr. Fraser focused on the intriguing possibility that the gut microbiota may play an important role in response to vaccines and susceptibility to enteric pathogens.

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Dale Birkle Dreer, Ph.D.
January 14, 2016
Dale Birkle Dreer, Ph.D.

In this blog post, Dr. Dale Birkle Dreer, chief of NCCIH’s Office of Scientific Review, discusses updates to policies, forms, and instructions for grant applications in 2016.

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Emmeline Edwards, Ph.D.
March 12, 2015
Emmeline Edwards, Ph.D.

Dr. Emmeline Edwards, Director of NCCIH’s Division of Extramural Research, discusses the recent Third National Summit: Advancing Research in the Arts for Health and Well-being Across the Military Continuum in this blog post.

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NCCIH Logo
December 15, 2014
NCCAM Blog Team

Lucy Bauer holds a Post-Baccalaureate Intramural Research Training Award (IRTA) position at NCCAM. Last week on the NIH's “I Am Intramural” blog, she shared her experience as an NIH postbac.

Learn more about applying to the NIH Postbac IRTA Program, which gives recent college graduates who are planning to apply to graduate or professional school a chance to train at the NIH for one or two years.

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Josephine P. Briggs, M.D.
December 12, 2014
Josephine P. Briggs, M.D.

This blog post by NCCAM Director Dr. Josephine Briggs presents a video clip about new research standards for low-back pain.

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NCCIH Logo
November 19, 2014
NCCAM Blog Team

Today, NIH announced important steps to enhance transparency of clinical trials results.  NIH Deputy Director for Extramural Research, Dr. Sally Rockey, provided more details about a proposed HHS regulation and NIH policy on her blog Rock Talk.  She explained how you, the research community, can provide feedback on both documents.  Dr.

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Josephine P. Briggs, M.D.
August 21, 2014
Josephine P. Briggs, M.D.

In this blog post, NCCAM Director Dr. Josephine Briggs discusses new research aimed at helping people who have multiple chronic health problems. The research is funded through the NIH Health Care Systems (HCS) Research Collaboratory.

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Dale Birkle Dreer, Ph.D.
July 28, 2014
Dale Birkle Dreer, Ph.D.

Dr. Dale Birkle Dreer, Chief of NCCAM’s Office of Scientific Review, explains NIH’s new policy on resubmission of grant applications in this blog post.

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Josephine P. Briggs, M.D.
July 21, 2014
Josephine P. Briggs, M.D.

In this blog post, NCCAM Director Dr. Josephine Briggs explains the achievements of NIH’s Common Fund during its first 10 years and NCCAM’s key role in two Common Fund initiatives.

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Dale Birkle Dreer, Ph.D.
June 19, 2014
Dale Birkle Dreer, Ph.D.

In this blog post, Dr. Dale Birkle Dreer, Chief of NCCAM’s Office of Scientific Review, describes NIH efforts to maximize fairness and impartiality in peer review of grant applications.

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David Shurtleff, Ph.D.
May 28, 2014
David Shurtleff, Ph.D.

In this blog post, NCCAM Deputy Director Dr. David Shurtleff talks about NCCAM’s role in President Obama’s Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative.

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Partap S. Khalsa, D.C., Ph.D.
May 01, 2014
Partap Khalsa, D.C., Ph.D.

In this blog post, Dr. Partap Khalsa, Deputy Director of NCCAM’s Division of Extramural Research, discusses new recommended standards for research on chronic low-back pain.

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Josephine P. Briggs, M.D.
March 17, 2014
Josephine P. Briggs, M.D.

The NIH community was delighted to welcome His Holiness the Dalai Lama on March 7 to present the annual NIH J. Edward Rall Cultural Lecture, in which he discussed “The Role of Science in Human Flourishing.” Not surprisingly, the event—a conversation between the Dalai Lama and NIH Director Dr. Francis Collins—drew a large and engaged audience.

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Josephine P. Briggs, M.D.
January 02, 2014
Josephine P. Briggs, M.D.

“Pragmatic trials” are the new buzz in clinical research. I want to spend this post talking a bit about why—and the reasons for NCCAM’s particular interest in this topic.

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Josephine P. Briggs, M.D.
October 18, 2013
Josephine P. Briggs, M.D.

After 16 days of being shut down because of a lapse in appropriations, the NIH is back and open for business. We are operating under a continuing resolution through January 15, 2014, and will begin to reestablish dates for grant and contract submissions, determine how to handle missed grant application review meetings, and reschedule dates for training and other activities that were cancelled.  I encourage you to keep abreast of updates by reading Dr.

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Partap S. Khalsa, D.C., Ph.D.
May 17, 2013
Partap Khalsa, D.C., Ph.D.

As we know, chronic low back pain (cLBP) is an enormous public-health problem—and a frustrating one to patients, health-care providers, and researchers. Up to one-quarter of Americans experience LBP per year, and for some, that pain becomes chronic—a condition that costs the United States an estimated $100 billion per year. Current best practices for its diagnosis and treatment are only partially successful.

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Josephine P. Briggs, M.D.
April 16, 2013
Josephine Briggs, M.D.

As the Nation’s medical research agency, NIH supports the full spectrum of pain research, from increasing basic understanding of pain mechanisms through translating new discoveries into prevention and treatment strategies. Pain is a major strategic focus for NCCAM in the context of complementary health approaches. About 30 percent of NCCAM’s research portfolio supports research on pain. Our intramural research program, headed by Catherine Bushnell, Ph.D., focuses on the role of the brain in perceiving, modifying, and managing pain.

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NCCIH Logo
April 03, 2013
NCCAM Blog Team

Yesterday, President Barack Obama announced the Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative. Francis Collins, M.D., Ph.D., Director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and Arati Prabhakar, Ph.D., Director of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, co-wrote a guest post on The White House Blog that provides an overview of the pioneering effort to rally Federal agencies, nonprofits, foundations, companies, and others in the challenge to understand the complexities of the human brain.

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NCCIH Logo
March 18, 2013
NCCAM Blog Team

Intentional use of common data elements (CDEs) can help improve data quality and promote data sharing among researchers. Furthermore, the use of CDEs facilitates opportunities for comparison and combination of data from multiple studies. The ability to harmonize data and compare studies through meta-analyses would be an important outcome of encouraging research communities to use CDEs.

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Josephine P. Briggs, M.D.
March 11, 2013
Josephine Briggs, M.D.

Dietary supplements such as herbs and botanicals are popular complementary health approaches. A new study in JAMA Internal Medicine, led by Regan Bailey, Ph.D., R.D., and her colleagues at the NIH Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS), used data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) to figure out why.

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Laura Lee Johnson
September 25, 2012
Laura Lee Johnson, Ph.D.

In the 1990s my grandmother was trying to make a number of decisions including where to live and what trips to take following her diagnosis with a chronic disease. At one point she was frustrated that her doctors could not tell her what chance she had of being able to attend my cousin’s wedding. While doctors spoke about her chances of dying, she was focused on how to live. She wanted to know about her physical, mental, and social health and what to expect so she could plan to attend the wedding. She wanted me to find research and use the findings to help her make decisions.

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Josephine P. Briggs, M.D.
June 18, 2012
Josephine P. Briggs, M.D.

Two weeks ago was the occasion of the NIH Pain Consortium 7th Annual Symposium on Advances in Pain Research. It was a great meeting, and we heard some terrific science presented. Modern neuroscience is clearly opening up our understanding of how the brain processes painful stimuli, and is yielding insights about how emotional states (or even placebo pills) modify the processing of pain in the brain.

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