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 Research Perspectives
The citations below provide updates on research advances and identify key research opportunities and challenges. Additional information on NIDDK research is available on our Research Areas pages.
- Rodgers, GP, Dietz, W, Lavizzo-Mourey, R. Research on Childhood Obesity: Building the Foundation for a Healthier Future. Am J Prev Med. 54(3): 450-452, 2018.
- Rodgers G, Austin C, Anderson J, Pawlyk A, Colvis C, Margolis R, Baker J. Glimmers in illuminating the druggable genome. Nat Rev Drug Disc. 17(5): 301-302, 2018.
- Norton JM, Ketchum CJ, Narva AS, Rodgers GP. Complementary Initiatives from the NIDDK to Advance Kidney Health. Clin J Am Soc Nephrol. 12: 1544-1547, 2017.
- Fradkin JE, Rodgers GP. Glycemic Therapy for Type 2 Diabetes: Choices Expand, Data Lag Behind. Ann Intern Med. 166: 309-310, 2017.
- Abbasi J. NIH Charts a Path for Nutrition Science. JAMA. 317: 243-244, 2017.
- Rodgers GP. First Lecture to New Doctors: 5 Lessons Learned. Am J Med Sci. 352: 615-617, 2016.
- Fradkin JE, Hanlon MC, Rodgers GP. NIH Precision Medicine Initiative: Implications for Diabetes Research. Diabetes Care. 39: 1080-1084, 2016.
- Fradkin JE, Wallace JA, Akolkar B, Rodgers GP. Type 1 Diabetes - Reaping the Rewards of a Targeted Research Investment. Diabetes, 65: 307-313, 2016.
- Grey MJ, James SP, Rodgers GP. NIDDK Programs and Emerging Opportunities in Digestive Diseases Research. Gastroenterology. 2015 May;148(5):868-76.
- Rodgers GP and Collins FS. No Time to Waste: The Next Generation of Obesity Research. JAMA. 308: 1095-1096, 2012.
- Fradkin JE, Roberts BT, Rodgers GP. Perspective: What’s Preventing Us from Preventing Type 2 Diabetes. N Engl J Med 367: 1177-1179, 2012.