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Trump threatens then signs, a win for FDA, NIH

Just hours after threatening on Twitter to veto the bill, President Donald J. Trump signed into law a $1.3-trillion spending package that includes a funding boost for the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Earlier budget requests from Trump for 2018 had contained proposals to cut the NIH's budget by 18% and the FDA's by 31% (Nature 546, 19–20, 2017). The omnibus spending bill, signed on March 23, allots the FDA a total of $2.9 billion (excluding user fees), which according to the House Appropriations Committee is a $135-million increase over the 2017 allocation. The new budget also includes $60 million for medical product development under the 21st Century Cures Act (Nat. Biotechnol. 35, 6, 2017), $15 million for setting up an Oncology Center of Excellence and $94 million for the agency to tackle the opioid crisis. The Alliance for a Stronger FDA welcomed the agency's funding expansion, saying in a press release that “The Alliance feels confident that FDA will be worthy of the trust that comes with these additional dollars.” The NIH will receive a budget of $37 billion, which is $3 billion more than the 2017 allocation, according to the House Appropriations Committee. This includes a total of $1.8 billion for research on Alzheimer's disease, an increase of $414 million from the 2017 budget, and $100 million to help develop a universal flu vaccine, up $40 million from 2017. The bill will fund federal government spending through to the end of the fiscal year 2018 on September 30.

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Trump threatens then signs, a win for FDA, NIH. Nat Biotechnol 36, 383 (2018).

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