ACTforNIH Statement on 21st Century Cures
The following statement may be attributed to Dr. Siddhartha Mukherjee, Advisory Committee Member, ACTforNIH:
“The urgency to adequately fund biomedical research to prevent, treat and potentially cure devastating diseases, such as cancer and Alzheimer's disease, cannot be overstated. Researchers are struggling to support their most innovative ideas. As recent developments in cancer research have shown, opening the spigots of research can have enormous dividends: the introduction of just two innovative drugs, invented, in part, through NIH-funded research, has transformed the treatment of metastatic melanoma, a previously untreatable cancer. Many more such transformative medicines are in development -- but none can be developed if scientists cannot fund their work.
We support the efforts of Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI), Rep. Diana DeGette (D-CO), Rep. Frank Pallone (D-NJ), and the 230 co-sponsors of 21st Century Cures to establish an $8.75 billion fund for NIH over five years — $1.75 billion of mandatory funding per year. These investments will allow researchers to find new treatments and cures for dreaded diseases. They will also help restore NIH's budget, which has declined by 22 percent since 2003, when adjusted for inflation.
That is a direct threat to the health and economic competitiveness of our nation, and we encourage the House to pass 21st Century Cures when it comes to the floor for a vote. Republicans, Democrats, and their tireless staffs have worked together closely on this bill, and we are thankful for this bipartisan collaboration that will advance medical research and save lives. We look forward to this legislation advancing to the Senate, and we will continue to work with appropriators in both chambers of Congress on increasing NIH’s baseline funding along with this new mandatory funding.”