NHGRI logo
Deputy Director

Division of Extramural Operations

Research Integrity Officer

National Human Genome Research Institute


B.S. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Ph.D. Johns Hopkins University


Dr. Issel Anne Lim is the Deputy Director of the Division of Extramural Operations (DEO) within NHGRI’s Extramural Research Program (ERP). She provides leadership in coordinating the institutes extramural research applications, awards, operations, and policies. NHGRI’s ERP reviews and manages external funding used to support research and research training programs outside the NIH. These scientific programs support the institute’s vision of improving the health of all humans through advances in genomics research. Dr. Lim joined NHGRI in 2024.

Previously, as the Senior Policy Advisor to the Director of the Office of AIDS Research in the NIH Office of the Director, Dr. Lim built and supervised the Policy, Legislation, Communications, and Engagement team, overseeing the development of reports to Congress, key science policy initiatives, legislative updates, online resources, and outreach efforts. As the Team Lead for Science Policy and Planning at the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), her responsibilities included strategic planning, coordinating NIH-wide reports, drafting talking points for congressional testimony, and analyzing data on maternal health, child health, reproductive health, rehabilitation, disabilities, population health, and other topics covered by NICHD’s mission. Dr. Lim has also worked on short-term projects as a Program Director in NICHD’s Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Branch, as a Referral Officer at the Center for Scientific Review, and as a Senior Advisor to the Director of the Division of Extramural Activities at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). Dr. Lim originally joined NIH in 2014 as a AAAS Science & Technology Policy Fellow, working primarily on implementing rigor and reproducibility policies in the NIH Office of Extramural Research.

At Johns Hopkins University, Dr. Lim completed her Ph.D. in biomedical engineering and an interdisciplinary postdoctoral fellowship in radiology, psychiatry, and neuroscience, developing MRI acquisition and analysis methods to characterize iron in the brain and spinal cord for neurodegenerative conditions. She earned her B.Sc. in Biology, with minors in biomedical engineering and toxicology, and a concentration in technical writing from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).


Chinn JJ, Eisenberg E, Artis Dickerson S, King RB, Chakhtoura N, Lim IAL, Grantz KL, Lamar C, Bianchi DW. Maternal mortality in the United States: research gaps, opportunities, and priorities. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2020 Oct;223(4):486-492.e6. doi: 10.1016/j.ajog.2020.07.021. Epub 2020 Jul 17.

Hua J, Blair NIS, Paez A, Choe A, Barber AD, Brandt A, Lim IAL, Xu F, Kamath V, Pekar JJ, van Zijl PCM, Ross CA, Margolis RL. Altered functional connectivity between sub-regions in the thalamus and cortex in schizophrenia patients measured by resting state BOLD fMRI at 7T. Schizophr Res. 2019 Apr;206:370-377. doi: 10.1016/j.schres.2018.10.016. Epub 2018 Nov 6. 

Hua J, Brandt AS, Lee S, Blair NIS, Wu Y, Lui S, Patel J, Faria AV, Lim IAL, Unschuld PG, Pekar JJ, van Zijl PCM, Ross CA, Margolis RL. Abnormal Grey Matter Arteriolar Cerebral Blood Volume in Schizophrenia Measured With 3D Inflow-Based Vascular-Space-Occupancy MRI at 7T. Schizophr Bull. 2017 May 1;43(3):620-632. doi: 10.1093/schbul/sbw109. 

Brandt AS, Unschuld PG, Pradhan S, Lim IA, Churchill G, Harris AD, Hua J, Barker PB, Ross CA, van Zijl PC, Edden RA, Margolis RL. Age-related changes in anterior cingulate cortex glutamate in schizophrenia: A (1)H MRS Study at 7 Tesla. Schizophr Res. 2016 Apr;172(1-3):101-5. doi: 10.1016/j.schres.2016.02.017. Epub 2016 Feb 28. 

Lim IA, Li X, Jones CK, Farrell JA, Vikram DS, van Zijl PC. Quantitative magnetic susceptibility mapping without phase unwrapping using WASSR. Neuroimage. 2014 Feb 1;86:265-79. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2013.09.072. Epub 2013 Oct 8. 

Lim IA, Faria AV, Li X, Hsu JT, Airan RD, Mori S, van Zijl PC. Human brain atlas for automated region of interest selection in quantitative susceptibility mapping: application to determine iron content in deep gray matter structures. Neuroimage. 2013 Nov 15;82:449-69. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2013.05.127. Epub 2013 Jun 12. 

Li X, Vikram DS, Lim IA, Jones CK, Farrell JA, van Zijl PC. Mapping magnetic susceptibility anisotropies of white matter in vivo in the human brain at 7 T. Neuroimage. 2012 Aug 1;62(1):314-30. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2012.04.042. Epub 2012 Apr 28. 

Landman BA, Huang AJ, Gifford A, Vikram DS, Lim IA, Farrell JA, Bogovic JA, Hua J, Chen M, Jarso S, Smith SA, Joel S, Mori S, Pekar JJ, Barker PB, Prince JL, van Zijl PC. Multi-parametric neuroimaging reproducibility: a 3-T resource study. Neuroimage. 2011 Feb 14;54(4):2854-66. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2010.11.047. Epub 2010 Nov 20. 

Last updated: March 22, 2024