Dear Research Advocate: Pope Francis’ visit to Washington has been a breath of fresh air, but now Congress must get to work and reach a funding agreement that avoids a government shutdown beginning October 1st. Didn’t we learn from the last shutdown, just two years ago? Young patients were turned away from clinical trials at NIH. Disease outbreaks were not monitored because CDC epidemiologists were furloughed. Drugs, devices and other medical products pending FDA approval were delayed. All of this -- and much, much more -- was then and is now, entirely avoidable. Advocates should not be complacent; a government shutdown screams “broken government,” and should not even be on the table...
Dear Research Advocate, It was a privilege to address the terrific crowd at last night’s kick off reception for the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Rally for Medical Research. Forceful champions including Senators Durbin (D-IL), Moran (R-KS), Murray (D-WA) and Klobuchar (D-MN) joined NIH Director Francis Collins to thank and encourage the more than 300 advocates who are blanketing both Houses of Congress today. Adding in social media attention, the Rally is likely to reach every member of Congress. During remarks at a Rally breakfast this morning, House “Labor-H” Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Tom Cole (R-OK-04) revved up the crowd when he said that “the stars are...
Where is science taking us and how do we leverage the opportunities before us to advance medical progress? Leaders representing various sectors of the research community expressed their views on legislative and regulatory issues, and our nation's research infrastructure at Research!America’s 2015 National Health Forum Thursday, September 10 at the Newseum in Washington, DC. Jeffrey Bloss, M.D., senior vice president of scientific and medical affairs, Astellas Pharmaceuticals U.S., lead sponsor of the event, discussed the importance of collecting, analyzing and disseminating real-world evidence, and engaging in value-based decision making. “Patient care will benefit from modernized...
The race for votes has begun yet candidates have been tight-lipped on what should be done to advance U.S. medical innovation. If elected, what will they do to help find cures for costly and deadly diseases like Alzheimer’s and cancer? Will they assign a higher priority to medical research and ensure policies keep pace with scientific opportunity or will they take medical progress for granted? Voters want to know. With the election season underway, Research!America has launched a new national voter education initiative, Campaign for Cures: Vote for Medical Progress! The initiative aims to engage candidates running for national office and voters on issues relevant to the health and well-being...
Dear Research Advocate, There is still time to join us -- virtually -- at today’s sold-out Health Research Forum. WebMD is livestreaming the event, which will begin a little before noon EST at the Newseum in Washington, DC. Find details on the event HERE , and livestreaming info HERE . Follow and join the conversation on social media by using the hashtag #RAForum15. Also today, on the advocacy front, NDD United is sending a letter with 2,500+ signatories, Research!America among them, to members of Congress. The letter calls for an approach to sequestration relief that includes both defense and non-defense discretionary spending. NDD advocates will be on the Hill today handing out baseball...
The September 2015 issue of The Research Advocate is now online . Highlights from this month's issue include: A federal policy update with details on the budget and appropriations agenda in Congress. A member spotlight featuring the Tuberous Sclerosis Alliance. Details on September's events in Washington, DC, such as Research!America's National Health Research Forum and the Rally for Medical Research. Download the entire September 2015 Research Advocate as a PDF.
The 2015 Lasker Awards, a prominent award recognizing achievements in medical research, were announced on Tuesday with scientists honored for their work in determining how DNA repairs damage to keep the genome intact, cancer research and the response to the Ebola crisis. Scientists Stephen M. Elledge and Evelyn Witkin received the Albert Lasker Basic Medical Research Award for their discoveries concerning the DNA-damage response, a mechanism that protects the genomes of all living organisms. James P. Allison received the Lasker~Debakey Clinical Medical Research Award for discovering and developing monoclonal antibody therapy that unleashes to the immune system to fight cancer. His work...
Dear Research Advocate, A refreshing number of members of Congress have allocated time during this recess to champion medical research, among them Senators Capito (R-WV), Franken (D-MN), and Kirk (R-IL), and Representatives Burgess (R-TX-26), Dold (R-IL-10), Israel (D-NY-03), Lance (R-NJ-07) and Walden (R-OR-02). Rep. Dold, for example, visited Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine as well as private industries in his district, like Marathon, to discuss ways to speed up medical innovation. Visiting the genetics lab at Northwestern, Rep. Dold commented: “We spent a little over 330 billion dollars this year in treating diabetes alone. Can we get some [additional] research...

Sidebar Quote

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