Shifting Landscapes in Science Research Investments
Policy Canada Budget Overlooks Basic Research
March 22, 2019 | Nature
Small spending bumps for genomics and physics stand in stark contrast to the funding windfall across basic research in last year's budget. Canada’s 2019 budget, released on 19 March, includes modest increases for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government priorities, including neuroscience and genomics research ― nothing like the historic five-year, Can$4-billion (US$3-billion) boost for basic science and research unveiled in 2018.
Gigantic EU Research Programme Takes Shape March 20, 2019 | Nature
The European Union’s three governing institutions — the European parliament, council and commission — reached agreement in the small hours of 20 March on the outline of the EU’s next seven-year research-funding programme, Horizon Europe. Like its predecessor, Horizon 2020, the new programme will fund collaborations between academia and industry, and prestigious discovery science.
NSF Hopes Congress Will Dig It Out of a $1 Billion Budget Hole March 19, 2019 | Science
For the second time in 3 years, President Donald Trump has recommended deep cuts to the National Science Foundation (NSF) in Alexandria, Virginia. And scientists are hoping Congress will again come to the agency’s rescue. One month after signing a 2019 spending bill that gave NSF a record $8.1 billion budget, Trump has proposed shrinking it by $1 billion in 2020.
Science in the News
First African-American Neuroscience Research Initiative Launched to Close the Gap in Health Disparities
March 19, 2019 | News-Medical.Net
The nation's first African-American Neuroscience Research Initiative, aimed at ensuring that genomic research and neuroscience studies are representative of individuals across all populations including African ancestry, launched today. This new enterprise partners the African-American Clergy Medical Research Initiative, comprised of prominent clergy leaders of the Minister's Conference of Baltimore, with the Lieber Institute for Brain Development, an independent, not-for-profit medical research institute working to develop new treatments for brain disorders.
Scientists Grow 'Mini-Brain on The Move' that Can Contract Muscle
March 18, 2019 | The Guardian
Scientists have grown a miniature brain in a dish with a spinal cord and muscles attached, an advance that promises to accelerate the study of conditions such as motor neuron disease. The lentil-sized grey blob of human brain cells were seen to spontaneously send out tendril-like connections to link up with the spinal cord and muscle tissue, which was taken from a mouse. The muscles were then seen to visibly contract under the control of the so-called brain organoid.
Biologists Discover Unknown Powers in Mighty Mitochondria
March 18, 2019 | Quanta Magazine
Of all the organelles to be found inside eukaryotic cells, the DNA-sheltering nuclei might be the best-known, but the mitochondria are surely not far behind. For more than a century, biologists believed that energy production was their only role. But that simple picture of mitochondria is turning out to be shockingly incomplete.