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Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Lauds Congress for Passage of Small Business Innovation Research Program
Date:4/24/2008

Revised Law Includes Designated Funding for Rare Diseases

BETHESDA, Md., April 24 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation today lauded the U.S. House of Representatives for passing legislation to reauthorize the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program.

In response to testimony from Robert J. Beall, Ph.D., president and CEO of the Foundation, the legislation includes a provision requiring that special attention be given to research for rare diseases, such as cystic fibrosis, when SBIR grants are awarded.

The SBIR program provides grants to small biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies for research and development programs focused on innovative treatments for rare diseases.

"We congratulate members of the House for recognizing the importance of funding for rare disease research and how critical these dollars are for cystic fibrosis and other devastating illnesses," said Beall. "The SBIR grants have been an important catalyst for several of our biotech collaborators working to find a cure. This special focus for the program is a win-win for everyone."

The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation was one of 20 organizations that supported the inclusion of rare disease research as an area of research that is "deserving of special attention in the SBIR program's reauthorization legislation." House Small Business Committee Chairwoman Nydia Velazquez (D-NY) and Ranking Republican Steve Chabot (R-OH) played a key role in the inclusion of this rare disease focus.

The legislation now moves to the U.S. Senate for consideration.

About the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation

The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation is the leading organization in the United States devoted to curing and controlling cystic fibrosis. Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., the Foundation has more than 80 chapters and branch offices throughout the country and supports and accredits a nationwide network of more than 115 care centers.
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SOURCE Cystic Fibrosis Foundation
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