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Alcohol institute gets leader from Scripps

The next director of the National Institutes of Health’s National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) will be George Koob, director of the Scripps Research Institute’s Alcohol Research Center and chairman of that institute’s Committee on the Neurobiology of Addictive Disorders.

As the institute’s director from January 2014, Koob will oversee its $458 million budget, which primarily funds alcohol-related research in areas such as genetics, neuroscience, epidemiology and prevention, NIAAA explained in a press release on 31 October. He will replace NIAAA’s acting director, Kenneth Warren, who led the institute for five years after former director Ting-Kai Li retired in 2008.

In September 2010, NIH’s Scientific Management Review Board voted to merge NIAAA with NIH’s National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) to create an institute focused on substance use, abuse and addiction-related research to optimize the agency’s research in these areas. But NIH’s director, Francis Collins, announced a change of course a year ago.

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