Rally for Medical Research Monday, April 8, 2013, 11:00 a.m. Carnegie Library Grounds at Mt. Vernon Square 801 K Street, NW, Washington, DC 20001
In 1897, a one-room diagnostic laboratory was established on Staten Island to assist with quarantine activities against cholera, yellow fever, smallpox, and plague. Within months, The Hygienic Laboratory, as it was called, had for the first time in the US, isolated the cholera bacillus. This was the beginning of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), which has since supported life-saving discoveries in almost every health area — from cancer, to infectious diseases, to dementia, to mapping the human genome. Over eighty Nobel prizes have been awarded for NIH-sponsored work.
On the economic side, the NIH has a direct and dramatic impact on the life science market. NIH-sponsored research has produced countless targets for drug discovery, as well as new technologies for studying biology and improving human health. It also is a huge employer and buyer of all types of life sciences products and services. Today, however, federal funding for medical research is declining — and sequestration isn’t helping. NIH-sponsored researchers are justifiably nervous; most likely, we’ll see that it was a tough first quarter for life science tool companies in particular.
Those of us who understand the importance of research and investment in science must stand up and speak out.
So what to do?
For those who are ready to get your activism on, come to the Rally for Medical Research while you’re in DC for the AACRmeeting. The rally will “call on our nation’s policymakers to make lifesaving medical research funding a national priority.” And if you have some time to meet up with me during AACR to share ideas or network about jobs, I’ll be there from Sunday, April 7 to Tuesday, April 9 — let me know when you’d like to meet, and we’ll set something up.