National Capital Area & Virginia

The National Kidney Foundation Salutes 2013 Kidney Ball Honoree:
Dr. Griffin P. Rodgers

Director of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, NIH

Dr. Griffin P. Rodgers was named Director of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)--one of the National Institutes of Health (NIH)--on April 1, 2007. He had served as NIDDK's Acting Director since March 2006 and had been the Institute's Deputy Director since January 2001. As the Director of NIDDK, Dr. Rodgers provides scientific leadership and manages a staff of over 600 employees and a budget of $2.0 billion.

Dr. Rodgers received his undergraduate, graduate and medical degrees from Brown University in Providence, R.I. He performed his residency and chief residency in internal medicine at Barnes Hospital and the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. His fellowship training in hematology was in a joint program of the NIH with George Washington University and the Washington Veterans Administration Medical Center. In addition to his medical and research training, he earned an MBA, with a focus on the business of medicine/science, from Johns Hopkins University in 2005.

As a research investigator, Dr. Rodgers is widely recognized for his contributions to the development of the first effective - and now FDA approved - therapy for sickle cell anemia. He was a principal investigator in clinical trials to develop therapy for patients with sickle cell disease and also performed basic research that focused on understanding the molecular basis of how certain drugs induce gamma-globin gene expression. Recently, he and his collaborators have reported on a modified blood stem-cell transplant regimen that is highly effective in reversing sickle cell disease in adults and is associated with relatively low toxicity. He has been honored for his research with numerous awards including the 1998 Richard and Hinda Rosenthal Foundation Award, the 2000 Arthur S. Flemming Award, the Legacy of Leadership Award in 2002 and a Mastership from the American College of Physicians in 2005.

Dr. Rodgers has been an invited professor at medical schools and hospitals both nationally and internationally. He has been honored with many named lectureships at American medical centers and has published over 200 original research articles, reviews, and book chapters, has edited four books and monographs, and holds 3 patents.

Dr. Rodgers is a member of the American Society of Hematology, the American Society of Clinical Investigation, the Association of American Physicians, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Science, among others. He served as Governor to the American College of Physicians and as Chair of the Hematology Subspecialty Board and a member of the American Board of Internal Medicine Board of Directors.