The NIH Fat Cat List

From: Even in a Time of Plenty, Some Do Better Than Others. "Fat cat" basic researchers, directors of large trials and surveys, and genomics Pooh-Bahs top the list of scientists with the most NIH funding. By Jocelyn Kaiser, Science 2001 June 15;292:1995-1997.

"Science decided to take its own look at the people at the top of the funding heap, examining the total amount of money received and number of grants. Recipients were divided into three groups -- those who do mostly basic research, clinical and social science researchers, and genomics centers. The leaders receive $3 million or more a year, eight times what the average investigator receives. At the same time, the portfolios of most of the top investigators include grants shared with other labs. Identifying the top-funded researchers from an NIH list of grants awarded in 2000 wasn't an easy task."

The ten top-funded basic research investigators

1. Stanley Prusiner, UC San Francisco: Prion diseases, $12.5M

2. Alfred Gilman, U of Texas SW Med. Center: Alliance for Cell Signaling, $9.8M

3. Ronald Crystal, Cornell University: Gene therapy, $6.6M

4. George Stamatoyannopoulos, University of Washington: Blood disease gene therapy, $6.4M

5. Seigo Izumo, Harvard/Beth Israel Deac. Med. Ctr.: Cardiovasc. functional genomics, $6.1M

5. Ian A. Wilson, Scripps Research Institute: Structural genomics initiative, $5.6M

6. Rainer Storb, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Res. Ctr.: Bone marrow transplants, $5.4M

7. Richard Boucher, University of North Carolina: Cystic fibrosis gene therapy, $5.1M

9. Paul Greengard, Rockefeller University: Signal transduction, $5.0M

10. Michael Gimbrone, Harvard/B&W's Hospital: Vascular endothelium, $4.9M

The ten top-funded clinical / social science researchers

1. Donald Morton, John Wayne Cancer Institute: Cancer vaccine, surgery trials, $11.9M

2. J Richard Udry, U of North Carolina: Adolescent health survey, $8.4M

3. David Alberts, U of Arizona: Cancer prevention trials, $6.3M

4. Thomas Coates, UC San Francisco: AIDS behavioral prevention, $5.8M

5. Fred Appelbaum, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Res. Ctr.: Adult leukemia research, $5.7M

6. Igor Grant, UC San Diego: AIDS neurology, tissue bank, $5.2M

7. Kenneth Menton, Duke University: Demographics of aging, $5.1M

8. Walter Willett, Harvard University: Diet and disease risk, $5.1M

Studies With Walter C. Willett as Project Leader (The Nurses Health Study was used to propagandize for Fen-Phen)

9. Robert Hobson, U of Med/Dent New Jersey: Vascular surgery trial, $5.1M

10. Carl Grunfeld, UC San Francisco: HIV and metabolism, $4.7M

The five top-funded genomics investigators (the super-heavyweights)

1. Eric Lander, Whitehead Institute: $65.3M

2. Robert Waterston, Washington University: $44.6M

3. Richard Gibbs, Baylor College of Medicine: $23.8M

4. Gerald Rubin, UC Berkeley: $14.1M

5. Ronald Davis, Stanford University: $9.4M

(These are the major publicly funded genome sequencing labs, which will supposedly be winding down in 2003 (?). Total = $157.2M.

The ten top-funded multi-grant recipients

1. Ronald Crystal, Cornell University: Gene therapy, $6.6M

2. Mary Jane Rotheram-Borus, UCLA: AIDS education, interventions, $5.7M

3. Kenneth Manton, Duke University: Demographics of Aging, $5.5M

4. Xiping Xu, Harvard University: Genetic, environmental epidemiology, $4.2M

5. Joseph Sodroski, Dana-Farber Cancer Inst.: HIV glycoproteins, $4.1M

6. Aravinda Chakravarti, Johns Hopkins University: Human disease genetics, $3.7M

7. Bruce Walker, Harvard University: Immune response to HIV, $3.4M

8. Irving Weissman, Stanford University: Hematopoietic stem cells, $3.0M

9. Daniel Tenen, Harvard University: Blood development and leukemia, $3.0M

10. Michael Oldstone, Scripps Research Institute: Virus immunobiology, $3.0M

Not counting the extravagant human genome project ($157.2 million), for various other genetics/gene therapy investigations, funding equals $44.3 million; for HIV/AIDS $28.9 million; for surveys, $19 million; for leukemia, hematopoietic stem cells, and bone marrow transplant research, $17.1 million; cell signaling (a reductionist indulgence which in practice leads to absurdities such as blaming excessive acid production for ulcers and treating them with H2 blockers and proton pump inhibitors instead of antibiotics), $14.8 million; diet and disease (sure to produce the kind of conflicting results to which the public has become accustomed), $11.4 million; vascular surgery/vascular endothelium research, $10 million. Even the $11.9 million cancer vaccine/surgery trials are aimed at treating tumors, not prevention of them. Needless to say, investigating the role of infection in so-called chronic diseases doesn't even show up on the radar screen.

Big Biology - The Alliance for Cell Signaling, a Special Pet of the Lasker Syndicate

A Nature Special Report: Alliance signals a fresh type of scientific research endeavour as the post-genomic face of 'big biology' gets under way. Diane Gershon investigates. Nature Jobs 2001 Apr 15. "With seven laboratories, about 50 principal investigators, and over US$25 million in federal funding for the first 5 of its 10 years, the Alliance for Cell Signaling (AFCS) is serving as an example of the post-genomic face of 'big biology.' This multi-disciplinary effort will focus on the G-protein-regulated (and related) signalling systems in two types of mouse cell - B lymphocyte and specialized heart cells known as cardiac myocytes." The $25 million is from the National Institute for General Medical Sciences; "Further funds from other NIH institutes, the pharmaceutical industry, non-profit organizations and an anonymous Dallas philanthropist could boost the five-year total to $50 million."

"Al Gilman, a professor of pharmacology at the University of Texas Southwestern (UT Southwestern) Medical Center in Dallas, began two years ago to assemble an impressive cadre of researchers to work to understand fully how cells interpret signals in a context-dependent manner. 'For years my own research had been going in a more and more reductionist direction but I had always been wondering how one could turn it around,' says Gilman, who was awarded the 1994 Nobel prize for his discovery of G proteins and their role in signal transduction in cells."

Evidently he believes that more money is the solution. And for this as well as his Nobel honors, it helps to have family connections to Lasker Syndicate tax dollars through the Goodman and Gilman "Pharmacological Basis of Therapeutics" dynasty. Meanwhile, if not for his benefactors, ulcers could have been treated with antibiotics since the 1940s without knowing a damn thing about cell signaling.

Alliance for Cell Signaling / Nature Jobs (pdf)

National Institutes of Health "Brown Books"

In 1997, the American Health Foundation got $11 million from the NIH; The RAND Corporation got $11 million; Johns Hopkins University got $292 million; the University of California at San Francisco got $215 million; Harvard University got $180 million.

Brown Books Research Menu, 1992-97 / National Institutes of Health
FY 97 Summary for State & Organization Totals / National Institutes of Health

New NIH Fat Cats

Fat Cats of Anti-Tobacco Funding as of 2012 (see The NIH Tobacco Fat Cats for 2014)

As of 3/4/2012, there are 3,119 results for "Tobacco," which cover only the budgets for 2008-2010. Fat Cats who received over $1 million in a single year include: Demetrius Albanes, $1,777,919 in 2008 and $1,155,055 in 2009 for "Alpha-Tocopherol, Beta-Carotene Cancer Prevention (ATBC Study)", at NCI; Marshall W. Anderson, $1,006,509 in 2008 for "Genetic Epidemiology of Lung Cancer," at the University of Cincinnati; Selena E Bartlett et al., $1,010,442 in 2009 and $1,010,412 in 2010 for "Characterizing Alpha5* Nicotinic Receptors in Alcohol and Nicotine Co-Dependence, at the Ernest Gallo Clinic and Research Center; Laura Jean Bierut received $1,027,033 in 2009 for "Genetics Study of Nicotine Dependence in African Americans" at Washington University; Anthony Biglan at Oregon Research Institute received $1,156,647 in 2008 for "Randomized Trial of a State Tobacco Prevention Program;" Kathleen Theresa Brady at the Medical University of South Carolina received $1,250,000 in 2009 for the South Carolina Consortium of the Clinical Trials Network; Louise Brinton at NCI received $1,537,322 in 2009 (and nearly $1 million the previous year) for "Studies of Rare Cancers;" Patricia A. Buffler at the University of California-Berkeley received $1,177,061 in 2009 and $1,095,067 in 2010 for "Childhood Leukemia and Home Environmental Exposures;" Kathleen M. Carroll at Yale University received $2,163,000 in 2010 for "Psychotherapy Development Research Center;" Nilanjan Chatterjee at NCI received $3,182,021 in 2008 and $3,016,931 in 2009 for "Methods for Epidemiology Studies" [gene-related]; Wong Chow at NCI received $1,158,916 in 2008 for "Occupational and Emvironmental Determinants of Cancer Among Women and Minorities;" Peter M. Cram at the University of Iowa received $1,306,667 in 2010 for "A Patient Activation Intervention to Enhance Bone Health;" Benjamin F. Cravatt at Scripps Research Institute received $1,543,823 in 2009 and $1,413,284 in 2010 for "A Quantitative Proteomics Platform to Characterize the Nicotine-Dependent Brain;" Dana C. Crawford at Vanderbilt University received $1,683,902 in 2008, $1,689,126 in 2009, and $1,791,938 in 2010 (plus several more of several hundred thousand dollars each) for "Epidemiologic Architecture for Genes Linked to Environment (EAGLE);" Donald H. DeHayes at the University of Rhode Island received $2,845,473 in 2010 for "URI Central Behavior Change Research Facility;" Kelly Doran at BLH Technologies received a contract for $1,297,042 in 2010 for "NCI, TCRB Scientific and Technical Services Support;" Steven Goldberg at NIDA received $1,273,289 in 2009 and $1,196,392 in 2010 for "Control of Behavior by Drug Injections;" Richard S. Hayes at NCI received $2,342,091 in 2008 for PLCO [Prostate, Lung, Colorectal and Ovarian Cancer] Trial Etiologic and Early Marker Study;" Stephen Heishman at NIDA received $1,569,419 in 2008 for "Neurocognitive/Affective Correlates of Tobacco Dependence in Adolescents," and eighteen others over the years for that and related work; Lloyd D. Johnston at University of Michigan-Ann Arbor received $1,615,701 in 2009 and $1,633,498 in 2010 for "A Cohort-Sequential Panal [sic] Study of Drug Use, Ages 19-50," and also received $4,866,537 in 2009 and $4,937,241 in 2010 for "Drug Use and Lifestyles of American Youth;" Lloyd Patrick Johnston of Selecta Biosciences Inc. received $997,127 from NIDA plus $1,999,481 from OD in 2010 for "Development of a Next Generation Vaccine for Smoking Cessation and Relapse Preven.;" Paul D. Kessler at NABI Biopharmaceuticals received $500,000 from NIMH plus $7,441,654 from NIDA in 2009, and also received $500,000 from NIMH plus $1,565,470 from NIDA in 2010, for "Phase III Study of a Nicotine Vaccine for Smoking Cessation;" Edmundo Nelson Kraiselburd at University of Puerto Rico Medical Sciences received $1,479,021 in 2008, $1,502,618 in 2009, and $1,547,110 in 2010 for "A Caribbean Project for Clinical and Basic Neuroscience Research;" Loic Le Marchand at University of Minnesota-Twin Cities received $1,030,073 in 2010 for "Multiethnic Genome Scan of Metabolic Phenotypes;" Donghui Li at University of Texas and MD Anderson Cancer Center received $1,020,222 in 2008 for "Molecular Epidemiology of Pancreatic Cancer;" Ming D. Li at University of Virginia-Charlottesville received $1,064,474 in 2010 for "Fine Mapping Susceptibility Loci for Nicotine Dependence;" Ilona Linnoila NCI received $1,169,604 in 2010 for "Molecular Pathology of Pulmonary Carcinogenesis;" Russell V. Luepker at University of Minnesota - Twin Cities received $1,587,813 in 2008 for "Minnesota Heart Survey - Renewal;" Pamela Ann Madden at Washington University received $1,027,800 in 2008 for "The Genetics of Vulnerability to Nicotine Addictions," plus large sums in 2009 and 2010; Colleen McBride at National Human Genome Research Institute received $1,069,256 in 2008 for "Family Risk and Lung Cancer Study;" William Joseph McBride at Indiana University - Purdue University at Indianapolis received $1,348,982 in 2009 and $1,229,716 in 2010 for "Ethanol and Nicotine Co-Abuse: Cross Sensitization of Their Reinforcing Actions;" Pamela Markell McMahon at Massachusetts General Hospital received $1,252,774 in 2010 for "Comparative Modeling of Lung Cancer Control Policies;" Robin J. Mermelstein at University of Illinois at Chicago received $1,031,822 in 2010 for "Patterns and Predictors of Smoking From Adolescence to Young Adulthood;" Alexey G. Mukhin at Duke University received $1,303,043 in 2009 and $1,280,461 in 2010 for "Improving the Efficacy of Anti-Nicotine Immunotherapy;" Robert O'Conner at Alion Science and Technology Corp. received $5,447,184 in 2010 for "Research on Inhalation Toxicology of Environmental Chemicals;" Carole Ober et al. of University of Chicago received $2,823,201 from OD and $2,823,200 from NHLBI in 2009 for "The Eve Asthma Genetics Consortium Building Upon GWAS;" Bert J.W.M. Oehlen of Angion Biomedical Corp. received $1,135,445 fom NHLBI in 2009 for "Therapeutic Use of Small-Molecule HGF-Mimetic for Emphysema;" Gloria M. Petersen at Mayo Clinic received $1,900,115 in 2009 for "Pancreatic Cancer Genetic Epidemiology Consortium (PACGENE);" Arthur V. Peterson at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center received $1,079,330 in 2010 for "Proactive Smoking Cessation for Adolescents;" Amelie G. Ramirez of University of Texas Health Sciences Center - San Antonio received $1,482,876 in 2009 for "Redes en Accion: National Latino Cancer Research Network;" Bruce D. Rapkin at Sloan-Kettering Institute for Cancer Research received $1,174,945 in 2010, and nearly $1 million the previous year, for "Developmental Core;" William N. Rom at New York University School of Medicine received $1,060,848 in 2008 and $1,082,162 in 2009 for "NYU Lung Cancer Biomarker Center;" Lynn Rosenberg of Boston University Medical Campus received $1,680,267 in 2008 for "A Follow-Up Study for Causes of Illness in Black Women;" James D. Sargent of Dartmouth College received $3,000,000 in 2009, and several grants of over $800K, for "Visual Media Influences on Adolescent Smoking Behavior (Y10-14 Renewal);" David Albert Schwartz of National Jewish Health received $1,643,541 in 2009 and $1,646,362 in 2010 for "GWAS in Fibrosing Interstitial Lung Disease;" Robert M. Senior of Washington University received $1,753,759 for "Mechanisms in the Remodeling of Lung Structure;" Scott Sherman of New York University School of Medicine received $1,006,699 in 2010 for "Effectiveness of Smoking-Cessation Interventions for Urban Hospital Patients;" Debra Silverman of NCI received $2,021,956 in 2008 and $1,123,133 in 2009 for "Cancer Risk in Human Populations;" Kari Stefansson of Decode Genetics Inc. received $1,109,442 in 2008 for "Genes Contributing to Nicotine Dependence in Humans;" Elliot Stein of NIDA received $2,892,727 in 2008, $2,757,878 in 2009, and $1,314,874 for "Brain Imaging of Human Drug Abuse;" also $1,314,874 in 2010 for "Functional and Structural Brain Circuits Underlying Smoking;" also $1,239,740 in 2008 for "Development of New Approaches to Neuroimaging with PET and SPECT;" Victor J. Strecher of University of Michigan at Ann Arbor received $1,690,307 in 2009 and $1,757,000 in 2010 for "Statewide Web-Based Cessation Program Evaluating Media and Cessation Components;" Lu Taylor of Battelle Memorial Institute received $1,519,001 in 2010 for "Studies to Evaluate the Toxicological Potential of Test Articles;" George Uhl of NIDA received $1,509,084 in 2009 for "Molecular Genetic Bases For Quit Success;" Unavailable [sic] at Omneuron Inc. received $1,874,252 in 2008 for SBIR Phase II Contract N44DA8-4408 - Development of a Real-Time FMRI Feedback Sy;" Unavailable [sic] at California Pacific Medical Center Research Institute received $1,138,487 in 2008 for "Medications Development for Stimulant Dependence;" Unavailable [sic] at Information Management Services Inc. received $6,769,947 in 2008 for "Biomedical Computing Support of Cancer Control and Surveillance;" Kevin G. Volpp at University of Pennsylvania received $1,350,389 from OD and $1,350,388 from NIA in 2009, plus $1,351,794 from OD and $1,351,793 from NIA in 2010, for "Developing Interactive Technologies to Improve Research and Health Behavior;" John K. Wiencke of University of California - San Francisco received $1,384,656 in 2008 for "Biomarkers of Lung Cancer Susceptibility in Minorities;" Robert A. Wise et al. at Johns Hopkins University received $1,087,246 in 2010 for "Enhancing NRF2 by Sulfoaphane Treatment in COPD;" Jerrell L. Yakel of NIEHS received $1,960,609 in 2008, $2,064,429 in 2009, and $2,238,386 in 2010 for "Modulation of Neuronal Channels and Receptors in the Brain." Total of just the listed figures is $162,317,316 for 2008-2010, an average of $54,105,772 per year.

NIH Research Portfolio Online Reporting Tools link / NIH

Mirjana V. Djordjevik is the Program Official of the National Cancer Institute in charge of the multi-year, multimillion-dollar anti-tobacco projects of Andrew Strasser and K. Michael Cummins.

See Also:

The NIH Anti-Tobacco Fat Cats (2014 update)
RWJF Anti-Tobacco Grants


cast 02-21-15