Celebrating 60 Years of NICHD

Logo of the NICHD 60th Anniversary. 60 years of innovation. Photos of a young woman with Downs syndrome, children wearing masks waiting in line outside a school, a physical therapist working with a patient on parallel bars, a grandmother holding a child who is kissing her cheek, and a mother reading from a mobile device with a child.

For 60 years, NICHD has been leading research and training to understand human development, improve reproductive health, enhance the lives of children and adolescents, and optimize abilities for all.

When it was founded in 1962, NICHD was the first NIH institute to focus on the entire life process rather than on a specific disease or body system. Learn more about NICHD’s establishment and early years.

To mark our 60th anniversary, we look back at key advances and milestones in NICHD’s history, and we look ahead toward future research directions. We also feature some of the people who make NICHD’s successes possible.

60 Years of NICHD Advances and Milestones

We commemorate six decades of NICHD research that has helped save lives, improve health and well-being, and reduce societal costs associated with illness and disability. Learn more about NICHD’s past and present contributions to science and public health.

Health care providers use a drop of blood from a newborn infant’s heel to test for congenital hypothyroidism. This heel-prick test was developed by NICHD-funded researchers in 1974.

Highlights in NICHD History

Important moments from 60 years of NICHD

A pregnant woman meets with her doctor.

COVID-19 Research and NICHD

Highlights of some of NICHD’s COVID-19 research activities

Smiling family in park.

Contributions to Society

Selected scientific advances made possible by NICHD research

Parents and their three children sitting at their kitchen table, eating a meal together.

Selected Research Advances of 2021

Roundup of 2021 activities to advance science and improve health

NICHD into the Future

NICHD will continue its contributions to advancing science and improving health well into the future. The institute’s work not only pursues scientific priorities but also focuses on improving public health, fostering diversity and inclusion, and ensuring proper stewardship of the nation’s health research investment.

The NICHD Strategic Plan 2020 outlines our goals for supporting healthy pregnancies, healthy children and healthy and optimal lives.

NICHD Strategic Plan 2020

Institute research themes, goals, and objectives

Family sites and eats a meal together.

Director’s Corner

The latest blog from NICHD Director Diana Bianchi, M.D.

African American teacher works on painting with a blind student.

STRIVE Initiative

An NICHD-wide effort to improve equity, diversity, and inclusion in its research and workforce

An African-American family at the playground with a happy 5 year old daughter. The little girl has caudal regression syndrome, a rare congenital disorder which affects the development of the lower spine. She is smiling as her parents buckle her into a swing.

30 Years of Rehabilitation Research

Marking 30 years of the National Center for Medical Rehabilitation Research

The Many Faces of NICHD

NICHD is and has always been a family—a whole that is more than the sum of its unique and extraordinary parts. This year and every year, we celebrate all members of the NICHD family, who help the institute achieve its mission.

Staff across NICHD bring with them a wealth of knowledge and skills that help the institute break new ground and expand existing knowledge.

A series of multicolored circles behind four overlapping circular images. From left to right: NICHD researchers Dr. Laura Pillay, Dr. Aisha Burton, Dr. Amrita Mandal, and Dr. Perdita Taylor-Zapata.

NICHD Women in Science

Highlights of the exceptional contributions of some female NICHD researchers

Chris McBain, Ph.D., Acting Scientific Director Division of Intramural Research

Get to Know NICHD

Stories from NICHD staff about their inspirations and career paths

Diana W. Bianchi, M.D.

Meet NICHD Leadership

Biosketches of NICHD leaders’ research interests and backgrounds

A ribosome (center) translates mRNA (multi-colored strand) into a protein (red). tRNA (dark purple) carries amino acids to add to the growing chain.

Intramural Research Highlights

Selected Division of Intramural Research advances

top of pageBACK TO TOP