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Science  21 Feb 2003:
Vol. 299, Issue 5610, pp. 1181b
DOI: 10.1126/science.299.5610.1181b

NIH deputy. An internist with a doctorate in health policy and economics has been tapped by National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director Elias Zerhouni as his deputy. Raynard S. Kington, who came to NIH in late 2000 to head its Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research, replaces Ruth Kirschstein, who is winding down a 47-year NIH career that included 2 years as acting director.

CREDITS: NIH

“Affable and very able” is the way one biomedical lobbyist describes Kington; another welcomes his “outside perspective.” Kington, 42, says he hopes to help his boss “deal with a very different budget environment.” His research has explored the impact of race and socioeconomic status on health.

Kind to humans. Maybe they figured that we're so much better at protecting animals than people, we might as well have a vet look out for human guinea pigs.

That's the joke going around after veterinarian (and toxicologist) Bernard Schwetz was named acting head of the 2-year-old federal watchdog office for protecting volunteers in clinical trials, the Office for Human Research Protections.

Schwetz brings to the job a wealth of experience at the Food and Drug Administration. But ethicists and patient advocates say his appointment suggests that the Bush Administration doesn't really care about reforming the patient protection system. The Department of Health and Human Services has yet to post an advertisement for the job, vacated more than 2 months ago by Greg Koski, and several seemingly natural candidates for the job haven't been approached, says bioethicist Mary Faith Marshall of the University of Kansas Medical Center in Kansas City. “It seems obvious that they're not in a panic to do anything about it,” she says.

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