Center grants are awarded to institutions with groups of established investigators working in areas of scientific emphasis defined by the National Institutes of Health. The goal of all NIH Centers is to power the discovery process at the heart of all scientific advances by facilitating and enhancing the collaborative efforts of the investigators within each center.

The establishment and support of centers is part of a broader strategy of the NIH whose overall goal is to more effectively translate scientific discoveries into improvements in people’s health. The elements of this strategy include:

  1. placing a greater emphasis on mentoring and developing our young faculty who will power the discovery process now and in the future;
  2. building our collective understanding of the precise molecular events that lead to disease states;
  3. developing a better understanding of the networks of molecules that function in an integrated manner in our cells and tissues; and
  4. enhancing multidisciplinary approaches involving research teams with complementary expertise to better tackle the complexity of the research questions we are asking and the disease problems we are addressing.

The Center for Research on Botanicals and Metabolic Syndrome (BRC), the Center of Biomedical Research Excellence (COBRE), and the Nutrition and Obesity Research Center (NORC) are the three NIH Centers of Excellence at Pennington Biomedical. They are organized around the common scientific theme of metabolic disease, and all three address complementary components of NIH’s overall strategy. The Pennington Centers of Excellence are devoted to expanding the research base and infrastructure that will provide scientific discoveries that will in due course lessen the burden of chronic disease and improve the quality of life.