This Week in Science Policy and Advocacy
Policy and Advocacy News
With Trump in the White House, Obama Science Experts Operate Shadow Network to Press Their Positions
August 7, 2017 | STAT
Former science advisors to the Obama administration have started working together to advise Congressional offices, scientific societies, and activists interested in keeping science a policy priority. Many of these staffers feel compelled to assist those interested in keeping science a priority due to their concerns about the future of science policy under the current administration.
- Join the Advocacy Network to stay informed about issues related to neuroscience research at SfN.org
August 10, 2017 | The Washington Post
In February, the Department of Agriculture removed all animal welfare reports from its website with little notice, resulting in public outcry, Congressional denouncements, and a lawsuit. The exact reason for the reports removal and when they may be restored remains unknown, but recently published logs reveal that there has been an increase in the number of Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests for the removed documents. A large proportion of these requests came from animal protection activists and journalists.
- Read more about animal research at SfN.org
August 4, 2017 | Science
Inspired by April’s global march for science, Indian scientists have come together to host their own march across more than 30 cities. March organizers are calling for an increase in government R&D spending and for Indian officials to promote scientific facts rather than falling victim to pseudoscience.
- Find information about global advocacy programs at SfN.org
August 5, 2017 | The Cincinnati Inquirer
Dr. Kim Seroogy, SfN Government and Public Affairs committee member and director of the Selma Schottenstein Harris Lab for Research in Parkinson’s, wrote an op-ed discussing his experience as a Parkinson’s researcher and the importance of federally funded research. Seroogy also calls on members of the public and scientific community to reach out to their representatives and tell them to oppose any cuts to federal research funding.
- Learn about U.S. advocacy programs at SfN.org
August 8, 2017 | The Hill
In this op-ed, Sherman Gillums, Jr., a retired U.S. Marine Officer, states his opposition to a House bill that would ban all VA medical testing that causes pain to animals. Gillums highlights discoveries made by the VA using animal research, how these discoveries positively impacted him following a combat injury, and the necessity of continuing this life-changing research.
- Find more information on the importance of animals in research on BrainFacts.org
Articles of Interest
August 9, 2017 | Scientific American
This article looks at research being conducted to map out the brain’s circuitry in the hopes of better understanding how the brain creates behavior. For example, scientists using detailed neural-network diagrams of model organisms have fund that a brain can use one network in multiple ways to create the same behavior.
- Learn more about mapping the brain on BrainFacts.org
August 7, 2017 | Nature
A study tracking online requests for journal papers from the web-browser extension Unpaywall, found that nearly half of all scholarly papers people tried to access online were free and legally available. The study examined both the state of open research and where papers are free to read, uncovering that more than 20 percent of scholarly articles searched using Unpaywall were directly available from journals.
- Read more on publishing and peer review on BrainFacts.org
August 8, 2017 | Nature
Researchers uncovered that the klotho protein has the potential to be used as a therapy against aging.
Study results found that the protein had beneficial effects on memory and learning in both young and aging mice. Researchers are interested to learn if this protein can be used in humans to enhance brain function and resilience, and hope to work towards human trials in the future.
- Learn more about the neurobiology of aging at BrainFacts.org
August 8, 2017 | Reader’s Digest
A recent study found that doctors may be able to identify a sub-group of people with Autism by measuring their rapid eye movements. Individuals with Autism are believed to have an altered cerebellum, resulting in an inability to make rapid eye movements as effectively. Researchers believe that further studies of rapid eye movement tests could lead to their use as an early detection method for Autism.
- Find more information on Autism on BrainFacts.org