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NIH Chief: Science is Ready for Pushing Discoveries to the Clinic

By March 17, 2011December 18th, 2023Awareness, Science & Research

National Insitutes of Health Director Dr. Francis Collins participated yesterday in a public webcast to answer questions on the NIH’s proposed National Center for Advancing Translational Science (NCATS) slated to open October 1. NCATS is to take the lead role at NIH for advancing scientific research discoveries to the clinic, and will become an umbrella center for ongoing NIH-funded programs that are already addressing this need.  NCATS has met with some controversy and concern that funding ‘drug development’ should not be a primary mandate of the NIH and that it could cannibalize funding that is available for basic research. This comes at a time when the NIH budget is already stretched. At the same time, NIH can fill a vital need that is largely not being supported by industry, getting discoveries ready for intial clinical studies. In the Q&A Dr. Collins indicated that a key reason why this initiative is so important is that the science itself has advanced to a point that there are many discoveries that need to be advanced  to ensure development of treatments for a range of diseases. NCATS could be a terrific resource especially for rare diseases like neurofibromatosis, in particular if NCATS colalborates with foundations like CTF, as well as industry and the Food and Drug Administration – which is all part of the NCATS plan.
The webcast will be available in archive for viewing. More information: here