NIH Names New Director for National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases

On August 2, the Acting Director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Lawrence A. Tabak, D.D.S, Ph.D., announced that Jeanne M. Marrazzo, M.D., would serve as the next Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). This position has been without a permanent director since Anthony Fauci, M.D., retired in December 2022, after nearly four decades as the Director of NIAID.

With a budget of $6.6 billion in FY23, NIAID is the second largest center at the NIH, National Cancer Institute being the largest. NIAID supports research to advance the understanding, diagnosis, and treatment of immune system, infectious, and allergic diseases. The institute supports projects at universities and research organizations around the United States, as well as a network of 21 NIAID labs across the country.

NIAID played a critical role in the nation’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic, including the development of pathbreaking vaccines. FABBS members will remember the words of former NIH Director Francis Collins, M.D., as he reflected on his tenure – ‘it had never occurred to him that once we had an effective vaccine that people would refuse to take it’.

FABBS plans to work with Dr. Marrazzo and underscore the opportunities and challenges for NIAID to incorporate insights from the behavioral and brain science community to most effectively achieve its mission.