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NHGRI to Devote $1M to Genomics IP Initiative

NEW YORK, June 4 (GenomeWeb News) - The National Human Genome Research Institute announced Wednesday that it will commit $1 million in FY 2005 to fund the investigation of intellectual property issues in genetics, genomics, and proteomics.


According to the RFA, the NHGRI has identified IP issues as one of the "Grand Challenges" for the future of genomics. Proteomics has made the issue even more complex, the NHGRI said. An official committee on the issue convened by the National Academies of Sciences will not be sufficient to address all the issues, according to the RFA.


"The NAS Committee is expected to release its report in the summer of 2005, but there will clearly be a need for other, more in depth, examinations and analyses of these issues, by investigators from a broad range of disciplines," the RFA said.


"To assist in addressing this need, the NHGRI proposes a new initiative to encourage the study of the role of laws and policies regarding intellectual property rights in genetics and genomics research and development, and the effect of such laws and policies on progress in these fields and on commercialization, drug development, health care delivery, and public health. The initiative is designed to support rigorous, carefully focused legal, statistical, economic, political science, historical, and other social scientific investigations, both theoretical and empirical," the RFA continued.


The NHGRI expects to fund six to eight projects as part of the initiative. The deadline for applications is Nov. 18. The RFA can be found here.


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