Science Policy
Drs. John Chatham, Sue Barman, Joey Granger, and Peter Wagner in front of Building 1 at the NIH.APS leadership visits Capitol Hill with Science Policy Director Alice Ra'anan (2011).APS Director Marty Frank (right) with Rep. Howard Berman (2nd from left)APS works with the National Institutes of Health on a number of key policy issues. (Image from NIH)APS Science Policy Committee during a 2009 trip to Capitol Hill.APS advocates for sustainable growth of the National Science Foundation budget. (Image from NSF)APS leadership after a 2010 meeting with NIH Deputy Director for Extramural Research Sally Rockey.APS offers information on current issues surrounding animal research and why it is important.ACE Committee Chair Bill Yates (right) shares a laugh with Rep. Mike Doyle (D-PA, left).Science Policy Director Alice Ra’anan accepts Distinguished Service Award from Faith Wolfe of States United for Biomedical Research in 2011.APS Science Policy Committee Members Meena Rao, Jennifer Uno, and Jim Galligan at the CapitolAPS members Kevin Kregel (left) and Bill Talman (right) meeting with Senator Grassley (R-IA) (2007)APS President Hannah Carey testifies on FY 2008 NIH funding before the House Labor-HHS Appropriations Subcommittee. The Science Policy Office covers issues that affect scientists and their work such as federal research funding and animal research. Check out our pages for background information, action alerts, and insights into becoming an advocate for biomedical research. For news and updates, you can RSS Icon subscribe to our RSS Feed or Twitter Logo follow us on Twitter @SciPolAPS.

News & Updates

APS Advises NIH on Sex as a Biological Variable

On September 11, 2014 NIH issued a Request for Information (RFI, NOT-OD-14-128) to assist NIH develop policies for the inclusion of sex as a biological variable in pre-clinical research studies involving animals and cells. The APS response recommends starting with accurate reporting of the sex of animal subjects and organisms from which biological materials were derived. NIH should provide training for investigators and reviewers before implementing the policy. APS also said additional resources will be needed to implement this policy without detriment to ongoing research. The APS comments are available on the Science Policy website.

APS shares benefits of SEPA program with NIH

In a letter to the NIH Scientific Management Review Board’s working group on pre-college engagement in biomedical science, APS President David Pollock shared the many benefits experienced by teachers participating in programs supported by the science education partnership awards (SEPA).

NIH to Require Balanced Sex Representation in Animal and Cell Studies

NIH Director Francis Collins and Office of Research on Women’s Health Director Janine Clayton announced that the agency plans to require investigators to “report their plans for the balance of male and female cells and animals in pre-clinical studies in all future applications.”

APS Urges OLAW to Revise “Significant Changes” Guidance

On March 11, 2014, OLAW published a request for comments on proposed guidance about what constitute “significant” changes to ongoing animal research activities. APS urged that a proposed revision to the guidance be revised to avoid “increas[ing] administrative burden rather than reduc[ing] it.”

APS Recommends Increased Funding for Research

As Congress considers budgets for fiscal year (FY) 2015, the APS submitted written testimony to the subcommittees that fund the National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, NASA, and the VA. For each agency the APS recommends increased funding to support the research enterprise and begin to reverse the damage done by reductions in federal spending.

President Obama Releases FY 2015 Budget Proposal

On March 4, 2014 President Obama released the Administration’s fiscal year (FY) 2015 budget proposal. The $3.9 trillion budget proposal provides a starting point for Congressional action to determine funding levels for all federal agencies and programs, including the National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Science Foundation (NSF), NASA, and Veterans Affairs (VA) medical and prosthetic research.

APS Members Tell Congress to Invest in Research, Regulate Sensibly

The January edition of The Physiologist features a spread on APS’s two Capitol Hill Day events in 2013.

APS Comments on Travel Restrictions for Federal Scientists

APS comments on the Office of Management and Budget 2012 restrictions on travel for federal employees directing agencies to cut their travel budgets by 30% and imposed new limits on conferences and meetings.

Negotiators Announce FY 14 Budget Deal

Tuesday, December 10, House and Senate Budget negotiators announced a deal to replace $63 billion in sequestration cuts in fiscal years 2014–2015 with $85 billion in deficit reduction.

Shutdown Impacts on Research

A collection of notices concerning how funding agency operations will be affected while the government is partially shut down due to the lack of FY 2014 funding legislation.

APS Commends Italian Scientists

A group of Italian scientists is seeking to draw attention to recently-approved legislation that could severely restrict animal research in that country.

NIH Finalizes New Chimpanzee Rule

On June 26, 2013, NIH Director Francis Collins announced that the agency had accepted nearly all the recommendations of a Working Group on NIH implementation of an IOM report on chimpanzees in biomedical and behavioral research.

APS Suggests Ways to Reduce Regulatory Burden

May 22, the APS offered suggestions for reducing the administrative burdens associated with federally-sponsored research in response to a request for information from the National Science Board (NSB).

White House Clarifies Rules for Federal Spending on Conferences and Travel

In May 2013, the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) issued a memo providing guidance on expenditures of federal funds for travel, conferences and meetings.

DOD Report: Animals Still Needed for Trauma Training

Alternative training methods cannot yet replace the use of live animals in the training of combat medics, the Department of Defense (DOD) told Congress. The finding was part of a report mandated under the FY 2013 National Defense Authorization Act.

APS Comments on Biomedical Workforce

The APS submitted comments in response to a request for information from the National Institutes of Health about implementing recommendations from the working group on the biomedical workforce. (PDF)

President Releases FY 2014 Budget Plan

President Obama released his FY 2014 budget plan with ambitious increases for most biomedical research funding agencies.

Congress Passes FY 2013 Funding Bills

On March 26, 2013, President Obama signed into law a package of legislation (H.R. 933) that will fund federal programs through the end of fiscal year (FY) 2013, including research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Science Foundation (NSF), NASA and Medical and Prosthetic Research at the VA.

Advocacy and Outreach

APS Early Career Advocacy Fellowship

The APS Early Career Advocacy Fellowship program seeks to engage early career investigators in advocacy activities and provide them with skills to become long-term advocates for scientific research.

Advocacy Resource Kit

Tips, talking points, and more ways you can stand up for science!

How to Contact Congress

Step-by-step tips for getting in touch with your legislators.

Tell Congress: Biomedical Research is Important

To increase support in Congress, the APS Office of Science Policy has prepared a model letter about the importance of biomedical research.

Supporting Resources

If federal investment in biomedical research is to continue, it will require support from Congress and the public. Scientists are in a unique position to explain why this research is critical to our nation's health and economic competitiveness.

Funding

President Obama Releases FY 2015 Budget Proposal

On March 4, 2014 President Obama released the Administration’s fiscal year (FY) 2015 budget proposal. The $3.9 trillion budget proposal provides a starting point for Congressional action to determine funding levels for all federal agencies and programs, including the National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Science Foundation (NSF), NASA, and Veterans Affairs (VA) medical and prosthetic research.

Congress Finalizes FY 2014 Budgets

Facing a mid-January deadline, Congress managed to finalize omnibus legislation that sets funding levels for federal agencies and programs, including research at the National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, NASA, and the VA

Negotiators Announce FY 14 Budget Deal

On Tuesday, December 10, House and Senate Budget negotiators announced a deal to replace $63 billion in sequestration cuts in fiscal years 2014–2015 with $85 billion in deficit reduction.

Animal Research

Basics of Animal Research

Learn more about how animal research contributes to biomedical discovery and the ways animal research is regulated.

Introduction: APS and Animal Research

The APS supports the humane use of animals in medical research. Medical research is beneficial to humans as well as other animals, and certain kinds of questions can only be answered through animal studies.

Current Topics in Animal Research

Updates and analysis of current issues surrounding animal research.

Security Concerns

Resources for facing animal rights extremists.

Agency Policy

APS Advises NIH on Sex as a Biological Variable

On September 11, 2014 NIH issued a Request for Information (RFI, NOT-OD-14-128) to assist NIH develop policies for the inclusion of sex as a biological variable in pre-clinical research studies involving animals and cells. The APS response recommends starting with accurate reporting of the sex of animal subjects and organisms from which biological materials were derived. NIH should provide training for investigators and reviewers before implementing the policy. APS also said additional resources will be needed to implement this policy without detriment to ongoing research. The APS comments are available on the Science Policy website.

APS Shares Benefits of SEPA Program with NIH

In a letter to the NIH Scientific Management Review Board’s working group on pre-college engagement in biomedical science, APS President David Pollock shared the many benefits experienced by teachers participating in programs supported by the science education partnership awards (SEPA). Dr. Pollock urged the working group to consider including SEPA in future plans to foster the next generation of researchers. (PDF)

NIH to Require Balanced Sex Representation in Animal and Cell Studies

NIH Director Francis Collins and Office of Research on Women’s Health Director Janine Clayton announced that the agency plans to require investigators to “report their plans for the balance of male and female cells and animals in pre-clinical studies in all future applications.”
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