Sunday, May 6, 2012

Public Affairs Announcements May7th2012

NIH Director Dr. Francis Collins admits, ‘it’s a scary time to be a young investigator’

On March 28th, the Senate Labor, Health and Human Services (LHHS) Appropriations Subcommittee held a hearing on the fiscal year (FY) 2013 funding request for the National Institutes of Health (NIH). During multiple rounds of questioning following Dr. Collins’ testimony, Senator Jerry Moran (R-KS) noted that flat funding for NIH is especially troubling because “it sends a message to the next generation, the potential researchers, scientists, and physicians, that the certainty of their career path or the value of what they do is not recognized.” Dr. Collins responded that, “It is indeed a scary time for new investigators because they have seen the likelihood of receiving funding decrease from 25-35 percent to a grim 17 percent.” To read more, see below.

Increasing Translational Science Opportunities

“Basic scientists play a key role in improving human health and treating disease,” said Richard A. Galbraith, MD, PhD, Chair of the FASEB committee that organized the meeting and developed the report and Associate Dean of Patient Oriented Research at the University of Vermont College of Medicine. “Yet, despite widespread national interest in accelerating the pace at which medical interventions are developed, few initiatives have focused specifically on engaging basic investigators in this process of translation,” Dr. Galbraith added. To read more, see below.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) today announced a new plan for boosting drug development: It has reached a deal with three major pharmaceutical companies to share abandoned experimental drugs with academic researchers so they can look for new uses. NIH is putting up $20 million for grants to study the drugs. To read more, see the link below.

The U.S. National Academy of Sciences (NAS) is regarded as the most prestigious honorary scientific society in the country. But it also has a reputation for being old, white, and male. Today its members took a big step toward changing their image by inviting a younger and more diverse group of scientists to join them. To read more, see the link below.

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