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House members put the spotlight on NIH ?>

House members put the spotlight on NIH

Special order speeches are an opportunity for members to speak on a subject of their choice without interruption on the House floor. On Wednesday, the second special order speech of the night highlighted the National Institutes of Health and the importance of funding for biomedical research. Rep. Jackie Speier, D-Calif., a champion for biomedical research, led the charge by starting her speech by describing the NIH as “the goose that keeps laying the golden eggs.” She cited that basic scientific…

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An update on sequestration ?>

An update on sequestration

Sequestration, or across-the-board budget cuts, is scheduled to go into effect Jan. 3 and threatens to cut $2.5 billion from the National Institutes of Health budget and more than $570 million from the National Science Foundation budget. NIH Director Francis Collins said the agency may have to eliminate up to 2,300 grants to make up the budget shortfall. For savvy readers of the Blotter, the threat of sequestration and the effects it could have on health research are well known….

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President Obama highlights the importance of basic research in the State of the Union address ?>

President Obama highlights the importance of basic research in the State of the Union address

In his 2012 State of the Union address, President Obama called economic fairness “the defining issue of our time.” In addition to focusing on tax reform, foreign policy and domestic job creation, the president also drew attention to several topics of interest to the biomedical research community, particularly, the importance of federal support for basic research. “Innovation also demands basic research. Today, the discoveries taking place in our federally financed labs and universities could lead to new treatments that kill…

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New NIH Center Mentioned in President’s Speech ?>

New NIH Center Mentioned in President’s Speech

On Saturday, September 17, President Obama gave at speech at Thomas Jefferson High School in the Virginia suburbs of Washington, DC while signing into law the America Invents Act, which among other things, restructured the nation’s patent process.  During his speech, President Obama said the following: “We live in a world that is changing so rapidly, companies like the ones represented here today, they can set up shop anywhere where there’s an Internet connection.  And if we want startups here…

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Fed Chairman Highlights Research and Development ?>

Fed Chairman Highlights Research and Development

Continuing a recent trend of high-level officials voicing their support for investment in scientific research, United States Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke gave a speech last week in which he praised the role of government funding for basic research.  Calling fundamental research “ultimately the source of most innovation,” Bernanke credited “federal research initiatives and government support [for] enabling the emergence of new technologies.” The necessity of government funding to compensate for funding lags in private industry was a constant theme…

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