COME AUGUST 1, those who have long maintained that James B. Wyngaarden, MD, director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for the past 7 years, is indeed "the man who wasn't there" will be correct in the literal sense. Wyngaarden, will have left his job as the 12th NIH director. At the same time there are those who will be sorry to see him go.
Wyngaarden already has called a special meeting of his senior staff and directors of the institutes and divisions and told them of his decision to leave. Contrary to reports that he was being forced out by the Bush administration, Wyngaarden insists that his decision to leave was his own. "I never looked for job security here," he said in an interview. "Originally, I intended to stay 5 years. Well, by August I will have been here 7 1/2 years."
"Wyngaarden's appointment as director was