Philip John (P.J.) Brooks is a Program Director in the NCATS Office of Rare Diseases Research (ORDR). Dr. Brooks received his Ph.D. in neurobiology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. After completing a postdoctoral fellowship at the Rockefeller University, Brooks became an investigator in the intramural program of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. He developed an internationally recognized research program focused on two distinct areas: the molecular basis of alcohol-related cancer, and rare neurologic diseases resulting from defective DNA repair, including xeroderma pigmentosum, Cockayne syndrome and Fanconi anemia. Since joining NCATS and ORDR, Dr. Brooks is interested in accelerating clinical trials in rare diseases by moving beyond “one disease at a time” approaches. Examples include the development of therapeutics that target shared molecular mechanisms underlying multiple rare diseases, platform technologies for the delivery of nucleic acid therapeutics, and the implementation of recommendations from the NCATS Cures Acceleration Network regarding the acceleration of gene therapy clinical trials. In addition to his responsibilities at NCATS, Dr. Brooks is the Working Group Coordinator for the NIH Common Fund program on Somatic Cell Genome Editing https://commonfund.nih.gov/editing.