NIH Institutes and BRAIN Initiative

The ten National Institute of Health (NIH) Institutes that are part the BRAIN Initiative are:

NEI -- National Eye Institute
NIA -- National Institute on Aging
NIAAA -- National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
NIBIB -- National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering
NICHD -- National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
NIDCD -- National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders
NIDA -- National Institute on Drug Abuse
NIMH -- National Institute of Mental Health
NINDS -- National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
NCCIH -- National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health

Francis Collins, MD/PhD – NIH Director

Director, National Institutes of Health

As NIH Director, Dr. Collins oversees the work of the largest supporter of biomedical research in the world, spanning the spectrum from basic to clinical research. Dr. Collins is a physician-geneticist noted for his landmark discoveries of disease genes and his leadership of the international Human Genome Project, which culminated in April 2003 with the completion of a finished sequence of the human DNA instruction book. He served as director of the National Human Genome Research Institute at the NIH from 1993-2008.


National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) mission is to seek fundamental knowledge about the brain and nervous system and to use that knowledge to reduce the burden of neurological disease.

NINDS supports and performs basic, translational, and clinical neuroscience research; funds and conducts research training and career development programs to increase basic, translational and clinical neuroscience expertise; and promotes the timely dissemination of scientific discoveries and their implications for neurological health to the public, health professionals, researchers, and policy-makers.


The mission of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) is to transform the understanding and treatment of mental illnesses through basic and clinical research, paving the way for prevention, recovery, and cure.

For the Institute to continue fulfilling this vital public health mission, it must foster innovative thinking and ensure that a full array of novel scientific perspectives are used to further discovery in the evolving science of brain, behavior, and experience. In this way, breakthroughs in science can become breakthroughs for all people with mental illnesses.


The mission of the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB) is to improve health by leading the development and accelerating the application of biomedical technologies.

The Institute is committed to integrating the physical and engineering sciences with the life sciences to advance basic research and medical care.


The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) mission is to lead the Nation in bringing the power of science to bear on drug abuse and addiction.

This charge has two critical components. The first is the strategic support and conduct of research across a broad range of disciplines. The second is ensuring the rapid and effective dissemination and use of the results of that research to significantly improve prevention and treatment and to inform policy as it relates to drug abuse and addiction.


The NICHD was established by President John F. Kennedy, with the support of congress, in 1962 to study the "complex process of human development from conception to old age."

In pursuit of its broad mission, the NICHD conducts and supports laboratory research, clinical trials, and epidemiological studies that explore health processes; examines the impact of disabilities, diseases, and variations on the lives of individuals; and sponsors training programs for scientists, health care providers, and researchers to ensure that NICHD research can continue.


TThe National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) mission is to conduct and support biomedical and behavioral research and research training in the normal and disordered processes of hearing, balance, taste, smell, voice, speech, and language.

NIDCD also conducts and supports research and research training related to disease prevention and health promotion; addresses special biomedical and behavioral problems; and supports efforts to create devices which substitute for lost and impaired sensory and communication function.


The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) supports and conducts research on the impact of alcohol use on human health and well-being. It is the largest funder of alcohol research in the world.

NIAAA conducts and supports alcohol-related research in a wide range of scientific areas including genetics, neuroscience, epidemiology, prevention, and treatment. NIAAA also coordinates and collaborates with other research institutes, federal programs, and other NGOS as well as disseminates research findings to health care providers, researchers, policymakers, and the public.


National Institute on Aging (NIA) leads the US government in conducting and supporting research on aging and the health and well-being of older people and is primary Federal agency on Alzheimer’s disease research.

The Institute seeks to understand the nature of aging and the aging process, and diseases and conditions associated with growing older, in order to extend the healthy, active years of life.


The National Eye Institute mission is to “conduct and support research, training, health information dissemination, and other programs with respect to blinding eye diseases, visual disorders, mechanisms of visual function, preservation of sight, and the special health problems and requirements of the blind.”

Vision research is supported by the NEI through approximately 1600 research grants and training awards. The NEI also conducts laboratory and patient-oriented research at its own facilities located on the NIH campus in Bethesda, Maryland


The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) mission is to define, through rigorous scientific investigation, the usefulness and safety of complementary and integrative health interventions and their roles in improving health and health care.

NCCIH's programs and organization incorporate three long-range goals: Advance the science and practice of symptom management; Develop effective, practical, personalized strategies for promoting health and well-being; and Enable better evidence-based decisionmaking regarding complementary and integrative health approaches.

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