I never took the opportunity to watch the popular and critically acclaimed AMC TV series, Breaking Bad, before it left the air last September. But according to the viewer numbers it accumulated, I was one of the few who didn’t watch. For those of you who joined me in this apparent oversight of masterful TV, the series focuses on Walter White, a struggling high school chemistry teacher who upon finding out that he has inoperable lung cancer turns to producing and selling methamphetamine to make sure his family’s financial future is secure once he is dead. The show was filmed and produced in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Taking advantage of the show’s popularity and the New Mexico backdrop, researchers at the Clinical & Translational Science Center at the University of New Mexico, entered a parody based on the series, entitled BREAKING (Bad) Barriers in the NIH Common Fund Video Competition. The film displays in an entertaining and simplistic way how bench discovery moves to clinical practice to a cure. More importantly the short film allowed UNM to showcase their CTSA and the work done there in a fun and entertaining way.
Finding new ways to communicate the science and research taking place within your lab is always a challenge. The NIH Division of Program Coordination, Planning and Strategic Initiatives (NIH/DPCPSI) is charged with assisting the NIH in effectively addressing emerging scientific opportunities. The Video Competition was just one idea from this office that gives researchers another outlet to publicize their research. This office can also assist in setting up NIH meetings and conferences, advertises new initiatives through the Common Fund and heads up collaborations across NIH Institutes and Centers.