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Research!America is dedicated to ensuring a strong public and private sector investment in research to improve health at a level warranted by scientific opportunity and supported by public opinion. Member organizations and others share their perspectives on a wide variety of topics relating to public and private sector research and innovation, and public health. The views expressed by contributors are their own and not the view of Research!America.

Recent Blog Posts

On May 15, Research!America hosted a forum, ’€œNeglected Tropical Disease Research in Louisiana: Saving Lives and Creating Jobs.’€ The forum, featuring leading NTD experts from the region, was held at Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine in New Orleans. Pierre Buekens, MD, PhD, dean of the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, addresses forum attendees. Pierre Buekens, MD, PhD, dean of the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, made opening remarks. He set the scene for the day, reminding us that there is a false divide between global and domestic health. Dr. Buekens pointed out that borders don’€™t matter when...
Leading researchers discuss emerging health threats at panel discussion During a panel discussion today at Tulane University’€™s School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, hosted by Research!America, several researchers and leading public health experts said the nation must increase public awareness and research to address the emergence of neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) in the U.S. NTDs, commonly associated with the developing world, have recently been identified in many parts of the country including Louisiana. Factors such as increased globalization, trade, migration, urban sprawl or climate change have been cited as potential underlying causes for the emergence of NTDs in the U.S...
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is marking a week-long observance of Women’€™s Health. In a statement about 2013’€™s National Women’€™s Health Week, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius points to the role of women as health care decision-makers in their families. Mothers, wives and daughters are often the first and primary care giver when a family member falls ill, and yet many women may overlook their own personal health. Research!America members like WomenHeart and the National Vulvodynia Association support research into health risks and challenges that are unique to women. Cancer research advocates like the American Cancer Society provide funding for research on breast and...
The chair of Research!America’€™s board of directors, John Edward Porter, tells Chemical & Engineering News that he began college with the aspiration of becoming an engineer or scientist. As fate would have it, he turned his focus instead to pursuing a law degree. He never lost his passion for science, though. That passion is evident in his efforts as a champion for research while in Congress and in his work with Research!America. Now he is charging scientists to take on a broader role in science advocacy. In an era of flat-funded budgets and sequestration, Porter says it’€™s important for scientists to engage more with policy makers, most of whom are lawyers by trade. Porter...
Karen Goraleski By ASTMH Executive Director Karen A. Goraleski The American Society for Tropical Medicine and Hygiene is an international organization comprised of scientists, clinicians and program professionals who work to promote global health through the prevention and control of infectious diseases. ASTMH recognizes that global health is America’€™s health and America’€™s health is global health. It is vitally important for the broad research community ’€“ from basic through implementation and evaluation ’€“ to actively support a vibrant and innovative research enterprise. Everyone benefits from a strong U.S. investment in research. U.S. budget challenges threaten to derail the...
A Presidential Proclamation in 1989 launched National Stroke Awareness month which is celebrated every May. Strokes occur when a blood vessel in the brain is clogged or bursts, preventing oxygen-rich blood from reaching an area of the brain. A number of factors can increase someone’€™s risk of stroke; including lifestyle choices that affect our cardiovascular health. But there are more complex factors including an individual’€™s genetic composition, age and gender. And risk factors for women can be different from those for men. You can learn more about these risk factors from the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association . The National Institutes of Health’€™s National...
In 2012, months before sequestration was enacted, scientists were already pressed to find jobs. Take the example of ’€œRebecca,’€ whose story was featured in a recent Huffington Post article. She had completed her PhD in chemistry and was working in an academic research laboratory. When her lab didn’€™t get a new grant to allow her to continue the research, she ended up unemployed. In an already tough financial environment, she spent three months looking for employment in research, hoping to utilize her hard-earned doctoral degree. In the end, she rewrote her resume, removing any mention of her doctoral degree and quickly found employment with an auto parts company, working as a secretary...
Adipose- derived stem cells. Source: Pendleton, Li, et. al. Mesenchymal Stem Cells Derived from Adipose Tissue vs Bone Marrow:In Vitro Comparison of Their Tropism towards Gliomas. 2013. PLOSONE. Recent research from Johns Hopkins Medicine that received government support shows that stem cells isolated from a patient’€™s own fat may be able to deliver new treatments directly into the brain to fight an aggressive brain tumor. The work, done in the laboratory of Alfredo Quinones-Hinojosa, MD, is a proof-of-principle study that tests the ability of a particular type of stem cell, mesenchymal stem cells, to locate damaged or cancerous cells. Cancer cells, particularly those in glioblastomas, the...
Based on their name, you might think that neglected ’€œtropical’€ diseases (NTDs) aren’€™t something American physicians would encounter often. While that may have been true in the past, there is a growing threat of tropical illnesses spreading through the U.S. Many factors may contribute to the rise in incidence, but the bottom line is a very real health threat that the American medical community may not be prepared to face. Take the story of Maira Gutierrez, for example. A resident of the U.S. for over 30 years, she found out she was infected with Chagas, a neglected tropical disease, after she donated blood. For years, no medical professional could provide more than cursory information...
Dear Research Advocate, House of Representatives Science Committee Chair Lamar Smith’€™s (R-TX) proposed legislation, the “ High Quality Research Act ,” would undermine, rather than achieve, “high quality” in research, since it would create several new hoops for approval of NSF-funded grants. These appear to be based on the mistaken idea that science follows a linear path to a single metric for success or failure. And the bill requires the NSF director to attest in advance to the success of each funded proposal! Letters penned by former NSF directors and National Science Board chairs and former NSF assistant directors warn of the “chilling and detrimental impact” this legislation could have...

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Public sentiment is everything. With public sentiment, nothing can fail; without it nothing can succeed.
Abraham Lincoln