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Authority record
Research institution

Texas Research Institute of Mental Sciences

  • Corporate body
  • 1955-1985

The Texas Research Institute of Mental Sciences was founded as a Baylor College of Medicine project in 1955 and funded by the state legislature in 1957 as the Houston State Psychiatric Institute for Research and Training. It was under the administrative management of the Board for Texas Hospitals and Special Schools, with the requirement that it act as the research and training branch of the state mental health and intellectual disability service system. TRIMS originally occupied a mansion on Baldwin Street, borrowed from M.D. Anderson Cancer Center (then M.D. Anderson Hospital); the research laboratories were in the carriage house. (Side note: Was this the Baker Estate?) It moved into its own building in 1961. That building, recognizable for its Midcentury design that featured series of arches in its roofline and glass exterior tile, was demolished in 2010 and the Institute moved into the Behavioral and Biomedical Sciences Building near Old Spanish Trail and Cambridge Street. The hospital branch was relocated to a nearby building in 1968 but the 1961 building continued to house the offices and library. The TRIMS name was adopted in 1967. A 1985 scandal relating to the validity of research data prompted a reorganization and transfer to the UT Health Science Center, during which it was renamed the University of Texas Mental Sciences Institute. The service role of the UTMSI has decreased since the 1980s but it continues to perform research and provide training in a wide variety of disciplines.

Texas Hadassah Medical Research Foundation

  • Corporate body
  • 1991-

The Texas Hadassah Medical Research Foundation was part of Baylor College of Medicine during the late-1990s and early 2000s. The organization, led in part by Dr. Armin Weinberg, provided medical supplies, cross-cultural collaboration and professional exchanges with Israel, Palestine, Kazakhstan, Russia, and other nations. An important part of its work dealt with radiation effects and events, like Chernobyl and atomic test sites in Kazakhstan. The organization developed the Cancer Registry of survivors of radiation events.

Robert Welch Foundation

  • Corporate body
  • 1954-

Robert Alonzo Welch was born in South Carolina and came to Houston around 1886. He started working for the Bute Paint Company (1867-1990) in 1891 as a bookkeeper and resigned in 1927 as secretary-treasurer but remained on it Board of Directors. In the early 1900s, he began investing in oil. When he died in 1952, 15% of his $25 million estate was divided among his 29 employees and the rest was used to establish the Robert A. Welch Foundation in 1954. The Welch Foundation is still a major source of funding for chemistry research in Texas.

Radiation Effects Research Foundation

  • Corporate body
  • 1947-0000

In November 1946, President Harry S. Truman issued a directive authorizing the NAS-NRC to undertake the long-term study of the survivors of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Just prior to Truman's directive, a five-man commission, operating under the auspices of the National Research Council's Division of Medical Sciences and calling itself the Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission, had been sent to Japan to conduct a preliminary survey of the situation.
The Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission (ABCC) was officially established under the direction of the Research Council's Division of Medical Sciences in March 1947. The ABCC, which was responsible for carrying out research in the field, was overseen by the division's Committee on Atomic Casualties, which later became the Advisory Committee on ABCC. Operations were funded by the newly created Atomic Energy Commission's Biology and Medicine Division.
The survey findings of the original five-man NAS-NRC commission, communicated in December 1946, made up the ABCC's first report. The first research program proper set up by the ABCC was a hematological study, begun under James V. Neel in March 1947. By 1950, the ABCC had a number of departments in operation, and had established a series of studies that would include research on radiation cataracts, leukemia and other cancers, survivors' aging and mortality rates, sex ratios of survivors' offspring, and genetics.
Logistical and organizational problems of the early ABCC were such that by 1955 it appeared that the program would have to be terminated. Toward the end of 1955, a committee under the direction of NAS Member Thomas Francis was sent to Japan to assess the ABCC and its programs; on the committee's recommendation a new and more effective study program was implemented. By 1957 George B. Darling of Yale University was made director, and it was under his long leadership -- ending only in 1972 -- that the ABCC was able to reorient and stabilize its operations. An Adult Health Study involving biennial examinations of survivors was soon established, followed not long after by new cytogenetic studies. It was also under Darling's leadership that the ABCC instituted bilingual technical protocols and increased the participation of the Japanese National Institute of Health in ABCC studies.
By the early 1970s, constraints imposed by increased operating costs began to make themselves felt. In response to requests that the Japanese Government increase its support of the ABCC, a new, binational private foundation, the Radiation Effects Research Foundation (RERF), was negotiated into existence, and in 1975 it replaced the ABCC while continuing the latter's programs.
[Original description by NAS Archives]

The Japanese Imperial Army and Navy initiated an investigation immediately after the August, 1945 atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Right after the conclusion of the war on August 15, 1945, the Special Commission for Investigating Effects of the Atomic Bomb was established in the academic research council on September 14 of the same year. Greatly influenced by the allied forces, academic research organizations spearheaded investigations in a variety of fields. On the other hand, while U.S. President Harry S. Truman ordered the United States Strategic Bombing Survey (USSBS) to promptly conduct an investigation into the effects of the bombing, on September 4 a U.S. Army medical investigation team held a meeting in Tokyo and met with the Japanese. Against this backdrop, in the same month The Armed Forces Joint Commission for Investigating Effects of the Atomic Bomb in Japan was organized. This Commission finished its investigation in December of that year.
In May, 1946, U.S. Army Colonel Ashley W. Oughterson, one of the leaders of the U.S. military joint investigation team, asked US Army Surgeon General Norman T. Kirk to recommend to the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) - National Research Council (NRC) the planning of continuous research regarding the effects of atomic bombs on the human body. With this, NRC Department of Medical Science (DMS) chair Lewis H. Weed convened a conference of the U.S. Navy, public health authorities, the State Department and the American Cancer Society, and they decided to dispatch to Japan an onsite investigative team of four, Austin M. Brues, Paul S. Henshaw, Melvin A. Block and James V. Neel in October of that year. Also, before that the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) was established as an organ of the federal government in August, 1946 with responsibility for both military and civilian nuclear development in the United States. The AEC took over the functions of the Manhattan Project, which developed the atomic bomb.
In November, 1946, with President Truman approving a long term investigation of atomic bomb injuries, the Committee of Atomic Casualties (CAC) was established in the United States National Research Council medical subcommittee with funding from the AEC, and the first meeting was held in March, 1947 (CAC was later reorganized into the Advisory Committee on ABCC). Also, the Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission (ABCC) was established based on the CAC and with a focus on the local investigative team of Austin M. Brues and others, who had already begun their work in Japan. The ABCC started operations temporarily based in the Hiroshima Red Cross Hospital.
While the initial main topics for ABCC were establishing a research system and problems in setting up a laboratory, regarding the former, in June, 1947 ABCC members and Masao Tsuzuki visited the Ministry of Health and Welfare Vaccination Bureau and the National Institute of Health (NIH) to request cooperation. As a result, in January, 1948 the NIH officially decided to participate in the ABCC. Further, in the same month it was decided to use the Ujina Gaisenkan as a research facility (Ujina Laboratory). Then Army Lieutenant Colonel Carl F. Tessmer became the first ABCC director in March, 1948, and that July an ABCC Nagasaki laboratory was established in the Nagasaki Medical College Hospital. In the same month facilities were completed in Kure as well (closed in 1953).
In July 1949, there was an opening ceremony for the Ujina Laboratory and the Kure facility with the participants including Crawford F. Sams, director of the Public Health and Welfare Section and Dr. Harry C. Kelly of the Economic and Scientific Section of General Headquarters, Supreme Commander of the Allied Powers (GHQ / SCAP). While the Ujina Laboratory was a temporary facility, after many twists and turns it was decided to build a permanent laboratory in Hijiyama. Work began in the same month and was completed in November, 1950. The transfer from Ujina Laboratory finished in 1951.
With the preparation of such a research environment, there was a series of investigations and research from 1949, including atomic bomb victim population surveys, leukemia surveys, adult medical surveys, nationwide atomic bomb survivor ancillary surveys in the national census, surveys of children exposed to the atomic bomb in utero and death / cause of death surveys. In September, 1951, the Hiroshima Medical Society and the ABCC held the Meeting to Read Research Papers on the Effects of the Atomic Bomb, and with the cooperation of the Science Council of Japan an ABCC report meeting was held in Tokyo in January, 1952.
In 1955, a special committee of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences National Research Council headed by professor Thomas Francis, Jr. of the University of Michigan reviewed the ABCC’s research, and the subsequent report (the Francis Report) recommended a Comprehensive Research Plan based on a clearly defined fixed group. With this recommendation, in 1957 director George B. Darling reformed the research program, and a system for U.S. – Japan joint research involving such agencies as the NIH was established during his term.
 In July, 1957, a system was established to publicly announce research plans and results. Technical Reports were prepared in both Japanese and English and distributed to ABCC employees, advisors, councils and institutions, governments and related private sector locations. Also, Annual Reports were published bilingually from 1957. There were also efforts to improve preservation and use of materials and data collected in the Japan – U.S. joint research.
Although most ABCC management expenses from its founding were covered by funding from the biomedical program of the AEC, an organ of the American federal government, due to such problems as contributions from Japan and the U.S., and securing employees to provide expert guidance, in the latter half of the 1960s discussion regarding the need to restructure the ABCC emerged. There were also increasing doubts about the U.S. led research system. ABCC restructuring gained the approval of concerned organizations in the U.S., and discussion between Japanese and American governmental authorities took place between 1972 and 1974. As a result, in December, 1974 an agreement was signed that provided for the establishment of a new laboratory as a legally incorporated foundation. In March, 1975 an ABCC scientific reconsideration special committee report was prepared, and the Commission closed on the last day of the month. On April 1, the following day, the Radiation Effects Research Foundation was founded as a new research organization to continue the investigation and research programs of the ABCC with the purpose of establishing a “contribution with peaceful purposes to the health of the human race and the health maintenance and welfare of atomic bomb survivors through the investigation and research into the medical effects of radiation on humans and resulting illnesses.”
[Additional description by JSPS Research Project]

National Heart and Blood Vessel Research & Demonstration Center

  • Corporate body
  • 1975-1983

The National Heart and Blood Vessel Research and Demonstration Center was established January 1, 1975, at Baylor College of Medicine, by the National Heart and Lung Institute, National Institutes of Health. The Center existed from 1975 through 1982, and research conducted at the Center resulted in nearly 800 publications.

Kelsey-Seybold Foundation

  • Corporate body
  • 1951-

Dr. Mavis Kelsey, founder and senior partner of the Kelsey-Seybold Clinic, P.A. of Houston, became acquainted with Dr. William Seybold first at UTMB and then more closely when both were working at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. Kelsey, Seybold, and Dr. William Leary discussed the idea of establishing a group practice.
Kelsey moved to Houston in 1949 and started a practice at the Hermann Professional Building. Seybold followed in 1950 and Leary in 1951. The Kelsey-Seybold-Leary Clinic first resided on the fourteenth and eighth floors of the Hermann Professional Building.
Other members of the Kelsey-Leary Clinic were Dr. John R. Kelsey, Jr., Dr. Mavis Kelsey's brother, and Dr. Albert O. Owens, psychiatrist from the Menninger Clinic. Dr. Seybold left the group in 1952 but returned in 1961, serving as Chief of the General and Thoracic Surgery Department. The physicians continued to practice together as the Kelsey-Leary-Seybold Clinic up until 1965, when Dr. Leary left to join the M.D. Anderson Hospital Staff. The Clinic was renamed the KelseySeybold Clinic.
Through the years the Clinic has changed its location, expanded its services, established satellite clinics, operated branches through the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, headed programs for the armed services and has opened the innovative Fitness Center.
In May of 1979, the partnership was converted to a Professional Association. The Kelsey-Seybold, P.A., also organized by the physician staff of the clinic were the Clinic Drugs, Inc., Kelsey-Seybold Leasehold, Medical Equipment Co., Inc. and Professional Supply Company, Inc.
The Kelsey-Seybold Foundation is a chartered, charitable foundation. The Foundation fosters the advancement of medicine by sponsoring medical research and education, especially cancer research and childcare.
The Kelsey-Seybold Clinic provides a diversity of services ranging from specialized, in depth treatment, comprehensive fitness health maintenance programs and the promotion of scientific research.

John P. McGovern Museum of Health and Medical Sciences

  • Corporate body
  • 1996-

The Health Museum started out as a series of health exhibits proposed in the wake of the 1962 “Victory Over Polio” mass-immunization campaign. The exhibits opened in 1969 within the Museum of Natural Science. The Museum of Health and Medical Science reopened in 1996 in its own building and was renamed the John P. McGovern Museum of Health and Medical Science in 2001 following a bequest from the McGovern Foundation. The Museum has expanded several times and now features a 4D theater (2008) and the DeBakey Cell Lab, the first bilingual science laboratory museum in the US. In 2017 it became the first Smithsonian affiliate in the Houston Museum District.

Institute for Rehabilitation and Research (Houston, Tex.)

  • Corporate body
  • 1951-

The Institute for Rehabilitation and Research was opened by William Spencer, MD, as the Southwestern Poliomyelitis Respiratory Center in 1951 at the peak of the US polio epidemic. It officially became The Texas Institute for Rehabilitation and Research in 1959, then just The Institute for Rehabilitation and Research in 1978. After the development of a vaccine in the early 1960s, Dr. Spencer shifted the practice to the rehabilitation of the catastrophically injured. As it expanded, the Institute recruited doctors who would become major contributors in specific areas of concern, such as Gunyon Harrison (pediatric cystic fibrosis), Carlos Vallbona (physiology and cardiology), Paul Harrington (orthopedic surgeon and developer of Harrington rods); and Bobby Alford (ENT). TIRR is affiliated with Baylor College of Medicine and the McGovern Medical School, and joined Memorial Hermann in 2006.

Howard Hughes Medical Institute

  • Corporate body
  • 1953-

The Howard Hughes Medical Institute was started in 1953 by industrialist and aviator Howard Hughes and the scientists and physicians he consulted as advisors. The Institute funded its own laboratories and research through the Hughes Aircraft Company. After Hughes’ death in 1976, management of the Institute passed to a board of trustees. In 1985, the Aircraft Company was sold to supplement the endowment. Although it originally intended to be a research institution and not a funding source, by this time, HHMI typically employed scientists to conduct biomedical research through laboratories at host institutions, which now number more than 60 nationwide. Since 1987, HHMI has supported graduate students, select professors, and education institutions through its science education program. The Institute began in Miami, Florida but is now located in Chevy Chase, Maryland. Hughes was born in Humble, Texas, and died on a plane en route the Houston’s Methodist Hospital. He is buried in Glenwood Cemetery.

Children's Nutrition Research Center

  • Corporate body
  • 1978-

The Children’s Nutrition Research Center was created in 1978 as a joint venture among Baylor College of Medicine, Texas Children’s Hospital, and the USDA Agricultural Research Service. It is one of six USDA nutritional research centers. The CNRC’s areas of study are nutritional metabolism in mothers, infants, and children; childhood obesity prevention; pediatric clinical nutrition; molecular, cellular, and regulatory aspects of nutrition during development; and developmental determinants of obesity in infants and children.


  • Corporate body
  • 2016

The ABAA KAKEN group was began by Professor Masahito Ando, a renowned expert in Archival Science in Japan. The group completed a Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) grant-in-aid research project titled "The Study on Developing Of A Digital Archive Relating To Atomic-Bomb Radiation Effect On The Human Body." The ultimate goal was to build a digital archive of Atomic-Bomb related documents. TMC Library with its unique collection of personal papers of ABCC -related scientists is a core member of the international part of the project and also a partner in international collaborative effort to make digitized documents available online for researchers around the world. The TMC Library agreed to preserve the work product of the group for posterity.