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Study: Era of Rapid Growth in Biomedical Research Over
Date:1/12/2010

ROCHESTER, N.Y., Jan. 12 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- After a decade of remarkable growth, total annual funding for biomedical research in the U.S. has decelerated and may have even fallen when adjusted for inflation.  That is the conclusion of a study today published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.  

"The era of rapid expansion in biomedical research funding that began in the 1990's has ended," said Ray Dorsey, M.D., a neurologist at the University of Rochester Medical Center and lead author of the study. "Looking back at this period, one of the striking observations is that while research funding increased, the number of novel treatments entering the market remained steady. If research funding levels are to return to a phase of growth, we should examine funding priorities, particularly in health services research, and barriers to the development of new therapies."

The authors compiled data from government sources, trade organizations, and industry financial reports to create a profile of biomedical research funding from 2003 to 2007. Over the five year period, annual research funding increased from $75.5 to $101.1 billion.  Adjusted for inflation, funding grew by an average annual rate of 3.4% over the period.  Using incomplete data, the authors estimated research funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and industry for 2008 at $88.8 billion, which, when adjusted for inflation, represents a decrease in funding.

The study is a follow-up to a similar analysis published in 2005 by the same authors that showed that biomedical research funding from all sources had tripled in nominal value and doubled when adjusted for inflation between 1994 and 2003. The a
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SOURCE University of Rochester Medical Center
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