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FYI Number 23: February 15, 2005

FY06 Request: National Institute of Biomedical Imaging & Bioengineering

Under President Bush's FY 2006 request, the total budget for NIH would grow 0.7 percent, or $195.0 million, from $28,650 million to $28,845.0 million. Within NIH, the budget for the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering would grow 0.5 percent, or $1.6 million, from $298.2 million to $299.8 million.

According to NIH budget documents, "The mission of the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB) is to improve human health by leading the development and accelerating the application of biomedical technologies. The Institute is committed to integrating the engineering and physical sciences with the life sciences to advance basic research and medical care. Research in biomedical imaging and bioengineering is progressing rapidly and is becoming increasingly multidisciplinary. Recent technological advances have revolutionized the diagnosis and treatment of disease and provide unprecedented opportunities for furthering understanding of biological processes and for conducting powerful biological investigations. To capitalize on these opportunities, the NIBIB is supporting a robust research program in biomedical imaging and bioengineering that will focus on developing fundamental new knowledge, fostering potent new technologies, supporting promising researchers, and facilitating cross-cutting capabilities."

Below are some highlights from the FY 2006 budget request for NIBIB. Further details can be found at http://www.nibib1.nih.gov/about/NIBIBCJFY2006.pdf.

Extramural Research would decline 0.2%, to $276.6 million.

Intramural Research would grow 35.1%, to $7.7 million.

Research Management and Support would grow 0.7%, to $15.5 million.

RESEARCH PROJECT GRANTS: "NIH's highest priority is the funding of medical research through research project grants (RPGs). Support for RPGs allows NIH to sustain the scientific momentum of investigator-initiated research while pursuing new research opportunities. We anticipate that the average cost of competing RPGs will be $321,000 in FY 2006. While no inflationary increases are provided for direct, recurring costs in noncompeting continuation RPGs, where the NIBIB has committed to a programmatic increase in an award, such increases will be provided.... The Fiscal Year 2006 request includes funding for 582 competing and noncompeting research project grants, 24 research centers, and 33 other research grants which include 18 career development awards."

NIH NEUROSCIENCE BLUEPRINT: "NIBIB is participating in the NIH Neuroscience Blueprint. The FY 2006 request includes $100,000 for a variety of Neuroscience Blueprint initiatives, including neuroscience cores, training initiatives, and the Neuromouse project. Initiatives for FY 2006 that are of particular relevance to the NIBIB include the cross-institute neuroscience training initiative in Neuroimaging, the computational neuroscience initiative that will link computational models to neurophysiology at multiple scales, and the neuroimaging initiatives."

TRANS-NIH ROADMAP: "Also included in the FY 2006 request, is NIBIB's support for the trans-NIH Roadmap initiatives, estimated at 0.89% of the FY 2006 budget request. This Roadmap funding is distributed through the mechanisms of support, consistent with the anticipated funding for the Roadmap initiatives." "The tie between the NIBIB mission and the NIH Roadmap is direct - the Roadmap will facilitate the development of innovative, novel and multidisciplinary science and technology that has the potential to further advances in health care. Roadmap activities will improve health by providing researchers with tools and capabilities to make new discoveries and to quickly allow basic research discoveries to be translated into new therapies."

QUANTUM PROJECTS NEW INITIATIVE: Highlighted as a new initiative is "NIBIB Quantum Projects." According to the budget documents, "The goal of the unique ‘NIBIB Quantum Program' is to make a (quantum) advance in healthcare by funding research on a specific project(s) that will translate into new technologies and modalities for the treatment, prevention and cure of disease within a reasonable time frame, for example 10 years. In these "bench to bedside" partnerships, a team of multidisciplinary scientists will conduct collaborative research that will result in a prototype product that can be immediately translated into clinical practice. Individuals from academia, Federal laboratories, regulatory agencies, medical care organizations, and industry will work in concert to enable the timely realization of a common goal - to improve human health by accelerating the development and application of biomedical technologies into the healthcare arena."

NIBIB STRATEGIC PLAN: The budget documents also note that the NIBIB is "developing a Strategic Plan reflective of our unique mission and science.... The successful implementation of our Strategic Plan will enable the NIBIB to integrate the engineering, physical and life sciences to effect a maximum positive impact on the national health care agenda."

ADMINISTRATION OF NIH BIOENGINEERING CONSORTIUM: In 2001, "the administration of the Bioengineering Consortium (BECON) transitioned from the Office of Extramural Research, Office of the NIH Director, to the NIBIB.... In its administrative role, the NIBIB is committed to maintaining the successful coordination of trans-NIH bioengineering research, training, and related programs."

INTRAMURAL RESEARCH PROGRAM: "The NIBIB has taken several steps toward further developing an intramural research program (IRP). In September 2004, the NIBIB convened a Special Advisory Panel for Intramural Programs.... The goal of the Special Advisory Panel was to advise the NIBIB on the size and scope of the Intramural Program. As such, the Advisory Panel will submit their recommendations to the [National Advisory Council for Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering] for review and discussion of further action."

Audrey T. Leath
Media and Government Relations Division
American Institute of Physics
fyi@aip.org
301-209-3094

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