Roughly two-thirds of the biomedical technology research and development programs formerly in the National Center for Research Resources are now part of NIGMS. Housed in the Biomedical Technology Branch of our Division of Biomedical Technology, Bioinformatics, and Computational Biology, the programs meet the needs of biomedical researchers by supporting cutting-edge research and development activities through a variety of award mechanisms.
In this post, I will focus on the Biomedical Technology Research Centers (BTRC) program, which supports the development and advancement of technologies needed to address today’s compelling biomedical research questions.
The 65 national resource centers—34 are funded by NIGMS and 31 by the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering—are available to scientists doing basic, translational and clinical biomedical research, providing them access to instruments, methods, software, expertise and hands-on training. With priority given to NIH-funded investigators, scientists have the opportunity to work closely and collaboratively with experts at the centers to:
- Adapt BTRC tools to further the specific aims of their projects.
- Contribute to the generation of pioneering technologies that can open up new research paths.
The BTRC program has been developing and providing access to state-of-the-art resources for 50 years, and it is directly responsible for such milestone innovations as:
- The introduction of the computer into the laboratory setting.
- The evolution of magnetic spin resonance from an observed scientific phenomenon to an analytical research tool to a clinical imaging technique.
- The development of technologies for harnessing synchrotron radiation for biomedical research.
- The creation of informatics approaches that allow for secure access to and sharing of huge volumes of dissimilar data.
At the half-century mark, the BTRC program remains vital and responsive to the scientific community. Ongoing centers continue to evolve and create innovative technologies, while new centers form as needs emerge.
We encourage you to take advantage of these valuable research resources. For more information about the NIGMS-funded BTRCs or other biomedical technology programs, please feel free to call 301-435-0755 or e-mail one of the following program directors: