January 2010

Outlook for the FDA Underscores the Need for Greater Investment in the Agency

For fiscal year 2010, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) received a $306 million increase over the previous year’s appropriations.  While typically a 15% increase in funding is cause for celebration, the FDA has been mandated by Congress to use much of this increase to support new responsibilities laid out in legislation like the Food and Drug Administration Amendments Act of 2007 and also to meet unexpected needs that arose as a result of the H1N1 influenza.  The remaining FY 2010 funds leave little or no room for expansion of programs that are central to the FDA’s public health mission. . While the President’s FY 2011 Budget is not available to analyze, funding may be hampered this year by concerns over the expanding national deficit.  The Administration has already signaled that spending on non-security discretionary programs will likely be frozen in the budget for three years.

The FDA needs to see a $120 million increase in FY 2011 just to sustain current program levels. Advocates are already calling for a $500 million increase in FY 2011 so that the Agency not only maintains the status quo but is able to advance its scientific integrity. Patients and their families are in desperate need of more effective treatments for Alzheimer’s disease.  While FDA has worked collaboratively with AD advocates on many issues related to the regulatory process for neurology products, it must be well-equipped with the tool and expertise necessary to evaluate the science behind innovative treatments presented to for this complex disease.  ACT-AD urges Congress and the Administration to strengthen its support for the fiscal health of the FDA, even in these difficult times.

ACT-AD Member Hosts  4th Annual Drug Discovery for Neurodegeneration Conference

The Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation’s 4th annual Drug Discovery for Neurodegeneration conference is taking place on Feb 1-2 in Houston,TX.  The primary goal of the conference is to train interdisciplinary scientists at the forefront of research in the principles of drug discovery for neurodegenerative disease. The conference will serve as a platform for scientists and industry leaders to exchange knowledge and resources and hopefully build public-private partnerships accelerating drug discovery.  A journal of the outcomes of the conference will be published following the event.

For more information on the conference, click here.