The President announced plans late last year to create a National Bioeconomy Blueprint. This Blueprint would detail government-wide steps “to harness biological research innovations to address national challenges in health, food, energy, and the environment.” The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy recently solicited comments to inform the Blueprint.
This week in the Wall-Street Journal Dr. Els Torreele, director of the Access to Essential Medicines Initiative of the Open Society Foundation's Public Health Program based in New York, and Dr. Josh Bloom, director of chemical and pharmaceutical sciences at the American Council on Science and Health also based in New York, were asked an interesting question; should patents on pharmaceuticals be extended to encourage innovation?
A group of aging and Alzheimer’s advocates will be meeting this week with the senior leadership of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to call for an increase in funding for the National Institute on Aging (NIA). In advance of this meeting, the group has orchestrated a sign-on letter to demonstrate widespread support for $1.4 billion, an increase of $300 million, in the FY 2013 NIH Budget to support the NIA. A similar letter was generated last year and garnered more than 400 signatures.
Many of you may still have this phrase ringing in your ears if you traveled with children for any length of time this past holiday season. Representatives from the ACT-AD Coalition, chaired by the Alliance for Aging Research, heard these same words almost two years ago, not uttered from the mouths of babes, but rather by prominent officials at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in a conversation regarding evidence to support the use of biomarkers for Alzheimer’s disease in clinical trials for “disease-modifying” therapies.
Conventional political wisdom holds that economics will dominate the Presidential contest this year. That may be true, but increasingly clashes over scientific issues roil the American political waters: think global climate change, sex education, evolution, and Plan-B the so-called morning after pill.
We are really excited at the Alliance to announce the addition of five new members to our Science Advisory Board including a prominent bioethicist, a world-renowned neurologist, a Nobel Prize winner in economics, a leading longevity researcher, and the only cardiologist to receive all four major cardiovascular research awards. Our Science Advisors are actively engaged in understanding the aging process, age-related disease, and the implications of an aging society. They offer us scientific insight, guidance, and expertise and help ensure that our health education and policy efforts meet the highest standards.
And the winner is…medical research? Just in time to avert a government shutdown, Congress passed a $1 trillion spending package on Friday. This bill will fund all of the government agencies through the end of the current fiscal year.
In a time where health care spending is sky-rocketing, where will the public draw the line? Evidence from comparative effectiveness research (CER) is increasingly being used in health-care treatment decision-making around the globe, yet there is still a lot to be learned about how the public feels and where they think the lines should be drawn.