This Week in Science Policy and Advocacy
Policy and Advocacy News
Researchers Win Some, Lose Some in Final U.S. Tax Bill
December 16, 2017 | Science
This article examines implications for science in the final tax bill. The final bill dropped the previously proposed changes to graduate student taxes and tax credits for research & development spending. However, research and higher education will be negatively affected by cuts to the orphan drug credits and new taxes on wealthy universities' endowments.
- Join the Advocacy Network to stay informed about issues related to neuroscience research at SfN.org
NIH Tweaks Plan to Award More Grants to Younger Researchers
December 15, 2017 | Science
NIH announced its plans to award 200 new grants to researchers less than 10 years out of their training and another 200 grants to early career researchers at risk of losing all funding. NIH's strategies to address the aging scientific workforce has been highly scrutinized by scientists and modified twice within the last year.
- Find Neuroscience Funding at SfN.org
NIH Plans Big Shake-Up of Minority Mentoring Network
December 19, 2017 | Science
Redirecting the National Research Mentoring Network, NIH announced that the second phase of its initiative will focus on researching factors influencing minorities in science. The future of existing mentoring network services is unclear.
- Learn about SfN’s Neuroscience Scholars Program for underrepresented researchers at SfN.org
Loss of Net Neutrality Could Harm Research
December 12, 2017 | Nature
Implications of the FFC's net neutrality reversal are currently unknown but this editorial suggests that scholarly articles may become costly or inaccessible. The editorial also argues that reversing net neutrality compromises open source initiatives in science.
- Learn about US Advocacy Programs at SfN.org
Articles of Interest
Can a multibillion-dollar biotech prove its RNA drugs are safe for a rare disease?
December 19, 2017 | Nature
Moderna Therapeutics has progressed mRNA delivery technology and shown that mRNA can be safely administered repeatedly in animal models. Although long-term safety is still in question, mRNA therapeutics have the potential to replace any missing protein.
- Learn about the bench to bedside process on Neuronline
Striking a Chord, NIH Taps the Brain to Find How Music Heals
December 19, 2017 | Associated Press
NIH’s Sound Health initiative addresses how listening and generating music is beneficial for health. The ultimate goal of NIH’s efforts is to determine the aspects of music that are therapeutic for different health situations.
- Read more about the health benefits of music on BrainFacts.org
Fighting Depression with Magnets
December 20, 2017 | Scientific American
Recent safety and efficacy data make TMS an increasingly common treatment for depression. TMS treatment responses are, however, inconsistent and long-lasting TMS effects are the focus of current research.
- Learn about depression treatment methods on BrainFacts.org
Could a Zap to the Brain Derail Destructive Impulses?
December 18, 2017 | NPR
New research suggests that deep brain stimulation can be used in reward-seeking behaviors including overeating. In an animal model of binge eating, researchers used a responsive neurostimulation system to intermittently deliver deep brain stimulation and effectively control fatty food consumption.
- Find more information on deep brain stimulation on BrainFacts.org