September 11, 2014


interns 2014

NIAMS Interns Reflect on Their 2014 Summer Experience

The NIAMS offers a Summer Research Program that provides outstanding opportunities for high school, undergraduate, graduate, and medical students contemplating a career in biomedical research or academic medicine. This year, 14 interns received career mentoring from NIAMS researchers, attended lectures and symposia, engaged in basic and clinical research, and gained credentials that will help them pursue their career goals. It is our pleasure to share with you some of their stories.

Image: NIAMS Summer 2014 Interns

Kayla's story

Kayla’s Story: A Bright Future Through NIH Research

Neonatal-onset multisystem inflammatory disease (NOMID) is a rare but devastating autoinflammatory disease that begins in infancy. The NIAMS has produced a new video describing how a NIAMS researcher discovered an effective treatment for it, allowing Kayla and other children with the condition to live a normal life, with an excellent prognosis.


Google Plus logo

NIAMS Establishes New Google Plus Page and YouTube Channel

The NIAMS has launched a new Google Plus (G+) page, and has established a dedicated channel on YouTube, which will provide a single, convenient platform for NIAMS stakeholders to view NIAMS video resources and other content.

On G+ and YouTube, the NIAMS will feature videos about research the Institute conducts and supports, as well as health information publications, news stories, resources, research advances and other news from the Institute and the National Institutes of Health (NIH). This new G+ and YouTube presence adds to the two existing NIAMS social media platforms, Facebook and Twitter.

Twitter Card: Spanish/English Twitter Chat. Join Us! #NIAMSLupusChat. Hosted by @NIH_NIAMS. Tuesday, 9/30, 2-3 p.m. EDT

NIAMS To Host Its First Bilingual Twitter Chat

In recognition of Hispanic Heritage Month, the NIAMS will host its first bilingual (English/Spanish) Twitter chat on Tuesday, September 30, from 2 to 3 p.m. EDT. This chat will focus on lupus, a disease that disproportionately affects Hispanic women. Tweets for this chat will be posted in both languages and questions will be answered in the language in which they were posted. From the NIAMS, Mariana Kaplan, M.D., and Susana Serrate-Sztein, M.D., will discuss the latest advances in lupus research. Irene Blanco, M.D., an assistant professor of rheumatology at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University, will be our guest “tweeter” and will assist in responding to questions. Dr. Blanco, an expert in the clinical aspects of lupus, has been a partner in the NIAMS Multicultural Outreach Initiative (NMOI). Other NIH Institutes and HHS offices are invited to participate in the chat. NIAMS Coalition and NMOI partners concerned with lupus and Hispanic communities are encouraged to participate.

Twitter users can log on to Twitter and follow the hashtag “#NIAMSLupusChat.” The chat can also be followed on services, such as: Twubs, TweetChat and Twitterfall.

Learn About Knee Replacement at

Did you know that knee replacement is the most common joint surgery, and that it’s becoming more widespread among baby boomers and adults over 75? A new topic from, Knee Replacement, offers videos, quizzes, FAQs and more for older adults who may be considering knee replacement or who just want to know more.

Structured Physical Activity Program Can Help Maintain Mobility in Vulnerable Older People: NIH-Supported Study Is First To Demonstrate Exercise as Disability Prevention Strategy

A carefully structured, moderate physical activity program can reduce the risk of losing the ability to walk without assistance, perhaps the single most important factor in whether vulnerable older people can maintain their independence, a study has found.

Federal Pain Research Database Launched: Multi-Agency Effort Combines Pain Research Information in Easy-To-Use Database

The Interagency Pain Research Portfolio, a database that provides information about pain research and training activities supported by the federal government, has been launched by six federal agencies. Pain is a symptom of many disorders; chronic pain can present as a disease in and of itself. The economic cost of pain is estimated to be hundreds of billions of dollars annually in lost wages and productivity.

x-ray of joints

Dietary Supplements for Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis, which affects an estimated 27 million Americans, is a leading cause of disability in older adults. Because the general population is aging and obesity, a major risk factor, is increasing in prevalence, the occurrence of osteoarthritis is on the rise. Clinical practice guidelines issued by the American College of Rheumatology recommend aerobic exercise and/or strength training, weight loss (if overweight) and a number of pharmacological and nonpharmacological modalities for treating OA of the knee, hip or hand.

Woman rubbing shoulder

Mind and Body Practices for Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia syndrome is a common and chronic disorder characterized by widespread pain, diffuse tenderness, fatigue and a number of other symptoms that can interfere with a person’s ability to carry out daily activities. It is estimated that fibromyalgia affects 5 million American adults. Most people with fibromyalgia—between 80 and 90 percent—are women. However, men and children also can have the disorder, which is often associated with other syndromes. The causes of fibromyalgia are unknown, but there are probably a number of factors involved. Recently, researchers have focused on abnormalities in processing of pain by the central nervous system.

tanning bed

Indoor Tanning Raises Risk of Melanoma: FDA Strengthens Warnings for Sunlamp Products

Using sunlamp products, such as tanning beds or tanning booths, increases the risk of skin damage, skin cancer and eye injury, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and numerous other health organizations. A particularly dangerous result is melanoma, the deadliest type of skin cancer.

Testing Interventions To Reduce Health Disparities

Many patients served by the Veterans Affairs Healthcare System belong to racial and socioeconomic groups that are at increased risk of experiencing or perceiving acts of discrimination, which is a known risk factor for poor health behaviors and outcomes. Leslie Hausmann, Ph.D., and colleagues are now taking steps towards mitigating the impact of discrimination on health and alleviating health disparities among veterans.


2014 International Symposium on Minority Health & Health Disparities

December 1–3, 2014
Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center
National Harbor, Maryland

The 2014 International Symposium on Minority Health and Health Disparities is designed to bring together scientists conducting transdisciplinary biomedical, clinical, population and health policy research; members of the global community; health care providers; government officials; and private industry to focus on the collective efforts to improve minority health, promote health equity and eliminate health disparities.

NIH Health Disparities Seminar Series

The National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD) sponsors the monthly NIH Health Disparities Seminar Series. The forum disseminates information on advances, gaps and current issues related to health disparities research. It features national and international health disparities research experts, including many funded by the NIMHD, the other NIH Institutes and Centers and federal agency partners. Each seminar focuses on a specific theme.

Upcoming Lecture:

September 18, 2014, 3 to 4:30 p.m. EDT
“If You Build It, Will They Come? Addressing Mental Health Treatment Gaps in Latinos”
Natcher Conference Center Balcony A, NIH Campus
Bethesda, Maryland

Behavioral and Social Sciences Lectures

The Behavioral and Social Sciences Research Coordinating Committee, and the Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research, regularly convene a series of guest lectures and symposia on selected topics in the behavioral and social sciences. These presentations by prominent behavioral and social scientists provide overviews of current research on topics of scientific and social interest. All of the seminars are open to the public.


man working on laptop

COMING SOON! NIAMS Health Information Basics Series

The NIAMS is updating four of its popular brochures and has combined them into a new series called “Health Information Basics.” These brochures will be available in English and Spanish and present fundamental information in a simple, easy-to-read format with stunning images. The titles will include:

  • Living with Lupus
  • Living with Arthritis
  • Bone Health for Life
  • Joint Replacement Surgery

The brochures will be available this fall. To order, please visit the NIAMS Publications Catalog online or contact the NIAMS Information Clearinghouse toll free at 877–226–4267 (TTY: 301–565–2966) or email

Thinking About Taking Dietary Supplements?

The NIH Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS) has produced three new videos featuring information about dietary supplements, and what you should know before taking them. They are:

Talking With Your Doctor Presentation Toolkit Now Available

Help older adults make the most of their medical appointments with the Talking With Your Doctor Presentation Toolkit. It’s easy to use—you do not need any special expertise or training. The presentation features tips for how to:

  • Get ready for a doctor’s visit
  • Effectively talk with a clinician about health concerns
  • Remember what was discussed following the appointment

2014 Stay Healthy Consumer Brochures

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality’s (AHRQ) newly revised Stay Healthybrochures inform consumers about the different preventive services that can help them stay healthy. The brochures describe recommended screening tests and steps for maintaining good health. The four Stay Healthy brochures available on the AHRQ website are: Men: Stay Healthy at Any AgeMen: Stay Healthy at 50+Women: Stay Healthy at Any Age; and Women: Stay Healthy at 50+.

Integrating Primary Care Practices and Community-Based Resources To Manage Obesity

AHRQ has developed a new toolkit for primary care practices to manage obesity. It provides tools and concepts that have been informed by the real world of six primary care practices in three rural Oregon communities.

My Medicines brochure

One Brochure That Can Be a Lifesaver: My Medicines

Can carrying around a brochure help save your life? Yes, if it’s the My Medicines brochure offered by the FDA’s Office of Women’s Health (OWH). It’s designed to help consumers track the medications they use.

FDA en Español

The FDA has added a new Facebook page in Spanish to its lineup of social media channels.

Woman exercising

How Long Should You Take Certain Osteoporosis Drugs?

Researchers at the FDA have taken a close look at the long-term benefit of bisphosphonates, a class of medications widely prescribed to treat osteoporosis. An FDA review of clinical studies measuring the effectiveness of long-term bisphosphonate use shows that some patients may be able to stop using bisphosphonates after 3 to 5 years and still continue to benefit from their use.

Woman checking face in mirror

Topical Acne Products Can Cause Dangerous Side Effects

Certain acne treatments can, in rare instances, cause severe allergic reactions that are potentially life threatening. The FDA is warning that the use of certain acne products containing the active ingredients benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid can cause rare but serious and potentially life-threatening allergic reactions or severe irritation. An active ingredient is the component that makes the medicine effective against the illness or condition it is treating.

Other Resources

Mariana Kaplan

Progress Made in Lupus Diagnosis and Treatment

Mariana Kaplan, M.D., Chief of the Systemic Autoimmunity Branch of the NIAMS, answers questions related to ongoing research into lupus. Read more about lupus in a recent issue of NIH MedlinePlus, including features on:

Image: dr. Mariana Kaplan heads a research program focusing on adult rheumatic diseases. Photo credit: Richard W. Clark, NIAMS.

hand with RA

NIH MedlinePlus Magazine

NIH MedlinePlus magazine presents reliable, up-to-date health information and the latest breakthroughs from NIH-supported research. A recent issue includes a NIAMS-supported story on Understanding Rheumatoid Arthritis.

  • Who Gets Rheumatoid Arthritis?
  • Treatment and Causes of Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Research Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis: “You Are Not Alone.”

NIH News in Health

Read practical health information in NIH News in Health, which is reviewed by the NIH’s medical experts and is based on research conducted either by the NIH’s own scientists or by its grantees at universities and medical schools around the country.

graphic illustration of family playing in the sand under a tent

Sun and Skin: The Dark Side of Sun Exposure

People enjoy the sun. Some have even worshiped it. Sunlight is essential to many living things. But sunlight also has a dangerous side. It can harm your skin and even your eyes. The good news is you can take some simple steps to protect your body from sun damage and still enjoy the sun’s healthful effects.

man with muscle ache

Protecting Your Tendons: Preventing the Pain of Tendinitis

You’ve probably heard of such sports injuries as tennis elbow or jumper’s knee. These are just two examples of tendinitis, a painful condition caused by overusing and straining the joints in your body.

Exercise Brings Bone Benefits That Last

Building bone as a young adult can have benefits that last a lifetime, a study showed. The research also confirmed that physical activity as we get older can help us maintain bone strength.

Join the Women of Color Research Network

If you’re a woman of color in research, if you’re mentoring one of these women or if you’re someone who values diversity in science, there’s a resource for you.


The NIAMS Exhibit

The NIAMS exhibit will be traveling to several events in 2015. See the schedule of health fairs and exhibits.

The NIAMS can provide health information or staff to help make your community event or health fair successful. Please contact Sara Rosario Wilson by email,, for more information.

Image: the NIAMS Exhibit


We invite you to subscribe to the NIAMS Update e-newsletter for the latest scientific news and resources on diseases of the bones, joints, muscles and skin. The NIAMS also publishes the Honoring Health: Resources for American Indians and Alaska Natives e-newsletter, which is distributed three times per year and highlights a different health topic for each issue, along with helpful resources for community members and health professionals.
Last Reviewed: 09/11/2014