The ASBMB’s Public Affairs Department encourages all readers of the Policy Blotter to alert the office about interesting and relevant articles. Please send tips to firstname.lastname@example.org.
This week, President Donald Trump welcomed 27 U.S. biomedical research leaders to the Oval Office for a closed-door summit. During the nearly two-hour-long meeting, leaders from academia, the biotech industry and federal scientific agencies, including the directors of the National Institutes of Health, Food and Drug Administration, and the Department of Health and Human Services, discussed issues ranging from the Human Genome Project to the process by which federally funded basic research translates into medical innovations and cures for diseases. The director of the NIH, Francis S. Collins, said the meeting “was an important step in laying out bold plans to fortify America’s role as a global leader in biomedicine.” Despite Trump’s previous calls for massive cuts to the NIH in his fiscal year 2018 budget proposal, many in the scientific community viewed this meeting as a possible signal that the administration may be changing its mind about slashing federal funds for biomedical research. However, as Collins told reporters after the meeting, “Only time will tell.”