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NIH Nutrition Research Task Force

The National Institutes of Health Nutrition Research Task Force (NRTF) was established in October 2016 to coordinate and accelerate progress in nutrition research across the NIH.

NRTF Members

The NRTF is chaired by Dr. Griffin P. Rodgers, Director of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK). Co-chairs include

  • Dr. Gary Gibbons, Director of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
  • Dr. Douglas Lowy, Acting Director of the National Cancer Institute
  • Dr. Diana W. Bianchi, Director of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development

Dr. Christopher Lynch, Director of NIDDK’s Office of Nutrition Research, serves as the Task Force Executive Secretary.

NRTF participants include staff from Institutes, Centers, and Offices within NIH.

Developing the NIH-Wide Strategic Plan on Nutrition Research

The NRTF is guiding the development of the first NIH-wide 10-year strategic plan for nutrition research. The strategic plan will emphasizes cross-cutting, innovative opportunities to advance nutrition research across a wide range of areas, from basic science to experimental design to training.

Estimated Nutrition Research Funding, Fiscal Year (FY) 2018

The opportunities in the strategic plan will complement and enhance ongoing research efforts across NIH to improve health and to prevent or combat diseases and conditions affected by nutrition. The graph below shows NIH nutrition research funding for FY 2018.

View description of graph

Funding Opportunities & Notices

The following Requests for Applications (RFAs) and Requests for Information (RFI) have been released to address possible focus areas of the strategic plan. Additional funding opportunities may be announced after the final strategic plan is released.

  • NOT-DK-19-020, Request for Information (RFI): Swallowable Smart Pills or Devices to Enable Precision Nutrition, Microbiome and Gastroenterological Research
  • NOT-DK-19-021, Request for Information (RFI): Precision Nutrition Tools for Continuous Monitoring of Nutrients and Metabolites in Humans
  • RFA-DK-19-019, Food as Medicine: Food Insecurity and HIV-related Comorbidities, Coinfections, and Complications within the Mission of the NIDDK (R01 Clinical Trial Optional)

Plan Development Milestones

  • Literature Review: Led by the Office of Nutrition Research, the NRTF conducted a survey of recent scientific literature to identify research gaps that had been captured by other federal agencies, professional societies, and researchers working across the field of nutrition.
  • Online Crowdsourcing Website: In early stages of the strategic plan’s development, an online crowdsourcing platform was used to solicit information from members of the public regarding critical gaps and opportunities in nutrition research that could be addressed by research funded by the NIH. Letters inviting participation in the crowdsourcing effort were shared with more than 40 professional societies as well as with all individual researchers who had submitted a nutrition-related grant proposal to the NIH in the past 5 years. The NRTF thanks all the individuals and organizations who took the time to provide their suggestions.
  • Nutrition Research Thought Leaders Panel: An external panel of 30 experts across diverse areas of nutrition science were invited to provide input on prioritizing research gaps and opportunities identified in the literature and crowdsourcing effort. Panel members are listed below.
Thought Leaders Panel Members Member Organization
Lindsay H. Allen, PhD United States Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service (ARS) and University of California, Davis
David B. Allison, PhD Indiana University
Cheryl A.M. Anderson, PhD, MPH, MS University of California, San Diego
Rozalyn M. Anderson, PhD University Wisconsin
David J. Baer, PhD United States Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service (ARS)
Teresa A. Davis, PhD Baylor College of Medicine
Michael K. Georgieff, MD University of Minnesota
Penny Gordon-Larsen, PhD University North Carolina
James R. Hébert, ScD University South Carolina
Frank Hu, M.D., PhD, MPH Harvard University
Dushanka V. Kleinman, DDS, MScD University of Maryland
David M. Klurfeld, PhD United States Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service (ARS)
Nancy F. Krebs, MD, MS University of Colorado
Bruce Y. Lee, MD, MBA Johns Hopkins University
Danny Manor, PhD Case Western Reserve University
Nilesh Mehta, MD Harvard University
Julie A. Mennella, PhD Monell Chemical Senses Ctr.
Simin N. Meydani, D.V.M., PhD Tufts University
Christopher B. Newgard, PhD Duke University
Diane M. O'Brien, Ph.D. University of Alaska Fairbanks
Karen E. Peterson, DSc University of Michigan
Ross L. Prentice, PhD Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
W. Sue Ritter, PhD Washington State University
A. Catharine Ross, PhD Pennsylvania State University
Cary R. Savage, PhD University of Nebraska at Lincoln, Nebraska
Alison Steiber, PhD, RDN Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
Patrick J. Stover, PhD – Chair Texas A&M University
Linda V Van Horn, PhD, RD Northwestern University
Gary D. Wu, MD University of Pennsylvania
Thomas R. Ziegler, MD Emory University
  • External Speakers that addressed the NRTF: The following external speakers have discussed opportunities and gaps in nutrition research.
    • Dennis Bier, M.D., Professor of Pediatrics and Nutrition, and director of the Children's Nutrition Research Center, Baylor College of Medicine
    • Susan T. Mayne, Ph.D., Director of the Food and Drug Administration’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition
    • Diane O’Brien, Ph.D., Professor of Biology and Wildlife/ Institute of Arctic Biology University of Alaska
    • Frank B. Hu, M.D., Ph.D., Chair of Department of Nutrition, Fredrick J. Stare Professor of Nutrition and Epidemiology at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women’s Hospital.
    • Steven Zeisel, M.D., Ph.D., Professor of Nutrition and director of the UNC Nutrition Research Institute and UNC Nutrition Obesity Research Center, University of North Carolina, Gillings School of Global Public Health
  • Public Comment Period on the Draft Strategic Plan: The NRTF invited public comments on a draft strategic plan in late 2018. All comments are being considered during revision of the draft document.

For More Information

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