The House Appropriations Committee has just released its report accompanying
the FY 2006 Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related
Agencies bill. This bill provides funding for the National Institute
of Biomedical Imaging and Bioenginnering. Under this bill, H.R. 3010,
NIBIB's budget would increase 0.5% to $299.8 million.
Overall funding for the National Institutes of Health rose 0.5% or
$142.3 million, to $28,506.8 million, which is $3.0 million below the
Bush Administration's request. The committee report explains regarding
the total NIH appropriation that "This amount includes $97,021,000
for targeted research activities to develop radiological, nuclear and
chemical threat countermeasures. The Administration had requested this
funding in the Public Health Social Services Emergency Fund."
The following is all of the language in the committee report, 109-143,
regarding the NIBIB. Note the final sentence regarding the role of NIBIB
in interdisciplinary research at NIH.
"The Committee provides $299,808,000 for the National
Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB), which
is $1,599,000 above the fiscal year 2005 comparable level and the
same as the budget request.
"Mission.--The mission of the Institute is to improve
health by promoting fundamental discoveries, design and development,
and translation and assessment of technological capabilities in biomedical
imaging and bioengineering, enabled by relevant areas of information
science, physics, chemistry, mathematics, materials science, and computer
"Imaging for autoimmune disease.--The Committee is encouraged
by the recent development of imaging technology being evaluated in
clinical trials for detection of metastatic cancer in human patients.
The Committee encourages the Institute to support the translation
of imaging technologies to the detection and diagnosis of autoimmune
diseases, in particular juvenile diabetes and organ transplantation.
Non-invasive imaging approaches are critical to the detection of progression
of disease or early rejection of transplanted organs or cells.
"Bone imaging.--The Committee urges NIBIB to focus on
improving musculoskeletal disease detection, monitoring and treatment
through focused imaging and engineering advances. The Institute is
encouraged to develop noninvasive techniques to measure bone quality
and bone strength in humans.
"Liver imaging techniques.--Consistent with NIBIB's
mission to improve all diagnostic imaging technologies, the Committee
encourages NIBIB to make liver imaging techniques a primary focus,
speeding the development of new modalities that better capture the
early stages of various liver diseases, including cancer, as well
as offering the potential for combinations of diagnosis and treatment.
This is also necessary to develop less invasive diagnostics for liver
disease patients. The Committee recommends that NIBIB participate
actively in trans-NIH initiatives that address these priorities.
"Long term budgets- The Committee acknowledges receipt
of the Five-Year Professional Judgment Budget for the National Institute
of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB) requested in House
Report 108-636. The Committee notes the budget's central conclusion
that biomedical imaging and bioengineering are dynamic and ripe
with opportunities for major scientific advances' that could be translated
into dramatic improvements in health care. The Committee notes that
the Five-Year Professional Judgment Budget recommends a measured,
reasonable rate of growth for the NIBIB to achieve the goals of the
important research areas enumerated in the report. As with all professional
judgment budgets, the Committee considers them within the constraints
of the annual budget, acknowledging that they represent the judgment
of scientific opportunity but not competing demands.
"Interdisciplinary research- The Committee also notes
that the Five-Year Professional Judgment Budget recognizes the role
of the NIBIB with respect to interdisciplinary research, the physical
sciences, and technology development. NIBIB has taken a leadership
role in efforts to examine the scientific questions that can be addressed
by collaboration between life and physical scientists, the barriers
to such collaboration, and the steps that need to be taken to bridge
these disciplines. The Committee recommends that NIBIB serve as the
primary home of any new NIH or interagency programs or initiatives
at the crossroads of physical sciences and biomedicine."