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NIH names Dr. Helene M. Langevin director of the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health

For Immediate Release:
Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Helene M. Langevin, M.D.
Dr. Helene M. Langevin

National Institutes of Health Director Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D., announced today the selection of Helene M. Langevin, M.D., C.M., as director of the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH). Dr. Langevin is expected to join NIH in November 2018.

“Helene’s distinguished career and leadership in the integrative health community, along with her research on the role of nonpharmacologic treatment for pain, makes her ideally suited to lead NCCIH,” said Dr. Collins. “We are so pleased to have her join the NIH leadership team.”

As NCCIH director, Dr. Langevin will oversee the Federal government’s lead agency for scientific research on the diverse medical and health care systems, practices, and products that are not generally considered part of conventional medicine. With an annual budget of approximately $142 million, NCCIH funds and conducts research to help answer important scientific and public health questions about natural products, mind and body practices, and pain management. The center also coordinates and collaborates with other research institutes and Federal programs on research into complementary and integrative health.

Dr. Langevin comes to NIH from the Osher Center for Integrative Medicine, jointly based at Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston. She has served as director of the Osher Center and professor-in-residence of medicine at Harvard Medical School since 2012. She has also served as a visiting professor of neurological sciences at the University of Vermont Larner College of Medicine, Burlington.

As the principal investigator of several NIH-funded studies, Dr. Langevin’s research interests have centered around the role of connective tissue in low back pain and the mechanisms of acupuncture, manual, and movement-based therapies. Her more recent work has focused on the effects of stretching on inflammation resolution mechanisms within connective tissue.

Dr. Langevin received an M.D. degree from McGill University, Montreal. She completed her postdoctoral research fellowship in neurochemistry at the MRC Neurochemical Pharmacology Unit in Cambridge, England, and a residency in internal medicine and fellowship in endocrinology and metabolism at The Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore.

“I want to recognize and thank Dr. David Shurtleff for his outstanding leadership as acting director of NCCIH for the past year,” added Dr. Collins. “David is an incredible asset to the NIH community and showed admirable commitment and dedication in this role.”


About the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH):
NCCIH’s mission is to define, through rigorous scientific investigation, the usefulness and safety of complementary and integrative health approaches and their roles in improving health and health care. For additional information, call NCCIH’s Clearinghouse toll free at 1-888-644-6226. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook , and YouTube.

About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation’s medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit