Last month, a group of lawmakers urged the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to take "extraordinary" action to fight rising drug prices. HHS got the note and is considering rolling out new guidelines to bring down skyrocketing prices.
Vice President Joe Biden has put improved data sharing at the center of a government-led initiative to cure cancer. The plan is to create conditions that usher improved drugs to market by working with tech companies to pull down data silos while boosting the resources available to public and private research teams.
Leaders at NIH's genomics research wing are planning to funnel $240 million into the Centers for Common Disease Genomics, a newly created group focused on identifying the genetic factors involved in widespread health issues such as heart disease, diabetes, stroke and autism.
The National Institutes of Health has launched a program to explore the role of genomics in common diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, stroke and autism. This program has gained a commitment for $313 million in NIH funding from various agencies over the next four years.
The U.S. National Institutes of Health is financing what's expected to be the largest long-term clinical study for an artificial pancreas to regulate the blood sugar levels in Type 1 diabetics to the tune of $12.7 million. This is the biggest chunk it's yet doled out as part of a program the agency started in 2014 to promote testing of artificial pancreas systems that's already backed at least three other research efforts.
The National Institutes of Health has awarded three grants to develop so-called co-robots that will work cooperatively with people to further health and quality of life. This funding for the trio of projects will total about $2.2 million over the next 5 years and stems from the four-year-old interagency, the National Robotics Initiative.
No specific treatment or vaccine currently exists for the mosquito-borne Chikungunya virus, but efforts are underway to remedy that. The NIH's National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) will bring its experimental vaccine into Phase II, keeping up with Austria's Themis, which raised $7.9 million to do the same for its candidate last May.
Early cost projections for the newly approved cholesterol-lowering PCSK9 meds from Sanofi/Regeneron and Amgen have predicted the meds will cost providers anywhere between $15 billion and an astronomical $150 billion each year. However, researchers say they are working on a vaccine with the potential to lower high cholesterol in a more cost-effective way.
Functional Neuromodulation, a startup backed by Medtronic and the National Institutes of Health, will advance its deep brain stimulation implant into a Phase III trial to treat Alzheimer's disease patients. DBS is a standard treatment for movement disorders, such as Parkinson's disease, but hasn't been widely applied to other brain disorders.
The NIH is offering a cash reward to researchers who come up with a plan to advance so-called open science as it part of its continued efforts to encourage data sharing.