science

Dear Research Advocate, In his inaugural address President Trump spoke of ushering in a “new millennium” to “unlock the mysteries of space, to free the earth from the miseries of disease, and to harness the energies, industries and technologies of tomorrow.” We’re all in on those goals, to be sure. The President has been very active on many of his campaign pledges during his first week in office, but science hasn’t been a driving theme as yet. However, some of his administration’s actions this week have alarmed members of the science community. It is a time for gatherings in our nation’s capital -- for the Inauguration, for and against the anniversary of Roe v. Wade and more. It’s our...
Dear Research Advocate, Tomorrow, our 45th U.S. President will be inaugurated. The challenge and opportunity that President Trump - and all our elected representatives - face is to ensure that the next four years deliver better health, safety and prosperity. I hope President Trump’s inaugural address signals that his Administration will leverage research and innovation to meet our nation’s normative and strategic objectives. With NIH, CDC, AHRQ and FDA under the purview of the Department of Health and Human Services, the new Secretary will influence the nature and pace of medical progress, the capability of our public health infrastructure, and other critical science-relevant variables in...
Dear Research Advocate, Washington is back in full swing. Members of Congress were sworn in on January 3 and started working right away on a budget resolution to facilitate repeal of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). While repeal appears inevitable, it’s a fact that the public and policymakers continue to be of two --or more! - minds about what a replacement should look like. The crucial importance of continuity extends beyond insurance coverage to include the Prevention and Public Health Fund (PPHF), the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) ,and the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (CMMI). I don’t want to overwhelm you with advocacy asks: please use this advocacy...
A new report prepared by leading scientists, thought leaders and policy experts, A Vision and Pathway for NIH , includes recommendations for the new Administration to further advance the nation’s leading biomedical research and health agency-- the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The goal is to better align agency organization and policies with present and future strategies for achieving the highest impact in research and training, and improving health outcomes. The report, written by an ad hoc working group, led by Research!America board member Keith Yamamoto, Ph.D., Vice Chancellor for Science Policy and Strategy; Director, UCSF Precision Medicine; Vice Dean for Research, School of...
Technology transfer, or the practice of transferring scientific findings from one organization, most notably universities, to another for further development, plays a pivotal role in the R&D ecosystem. It is the bridge that ensures knowledge cultivated through academic research reaches patients and other beneficiaries, and it is a critically important means of financing further science and technology at academic institutions in the U.S. and around the world. The Association of University Technology Managers (AUTM), a nonprofit organization with an international membership of more than 3,000 technology managers and business executives, has developed a project that not only highlights the...
Each blockbuster drug, every novel vaccine or innovative therapy now heralded as a lifesaving miracle had the humblest of beginnings – as a project in a scientist’s lab. Through years of study and millions of dollars invested, these discoveries became the groundbreaking treatments that changed people’s lives. A scientist’s idea and a medicine’s path to patients who need it is one of the best stories out there, and we at Spectrum get to tell it every day. Spectrum is a proud member of Research!America. We are a public relations firm serving clients exclusively in health, medicine and life science, and we share Research!America’s passion for medical research and the promise of scientific...
Excerpt of an op-ed by Research!America President and CEO Mary Woolley published in the Huffington Post . As the new Congress sets priorities, there are strong indications that the political climate is ripe for a surge in science. Bipartisan support for the 21st Century Cures Initiative, a comprehensive study of roadblocks to medical innovation and development of new disease therapies and treatments, is slated to move forward with draft legislation early next year. The measure is expected to address six areas of reform: integrating patients’ perspectives into the regulatory process, modernizing clinical trials, fostering the future of science, investing in advancing research, incentivizing...
We applaud the confirmation of Dr. Vivek Murthy as U.S. surgeon general, a visionary thinker who is well-equipped to assume the role of America’s doctor. Throughout his career he has demonstrated a strong commitment to improving public health and unwillingness to accept the status quo: invaluable traits for such challenges as combating Ebola, the obesity epidemic, tobacco-related disease and other complex health issues that confront our nation. His determination to hit the ground running to address health disparities and reduce the stigma of mental health, with a clear understanding of the role of science and innovation in improving health outcomes, is also critically important to advancing...
Dear Research Advocate: Ebola remains in the news. In the midst of the demoralizing finger pointing that seems to have taken the place of unity of mission that ought to characterize our nation, we are occasionally reminded that science is a problem solver. That’€™s a useful message to convey if we hope to keep the current politicization from worsening. But more of us have to speak out. Don’€™t stand on the sidelines when you could make a difference at this important time when people are paying much more attention to research than usual. With the election only a little over a week away, take the time to ask candidates a question or two. Email or tweet in questions to debates and contact...
Dear Research Advocate: The 2014 Nobel Laureates will be announced next week. I hope you will consider amplifying the news via social media, op-eds and letters to the editor. The Nobel prize is so iconic that it provides an entrée to the broader public, one that can be used to connect the dots between the process of scientific discovery, the power of ingenuity, and the role of science in human progress. And if a winner has been funded by a U.S. science agency or company, all the better from an advocacy perspective! In the years ahead, will the United States be home to more Nobel Laureates in the sciences, or will those honors go to scientists in countries that place a greater emphasis on...

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Without continued support for health research, many of the most promising young scientists, their ideas and a myriad of potentially life-changing scientific breakthroughs will vanish into oblivion.
Paul Marinec, PhD; University of California San Francisco