I wrote yesterday about the Twitter stream launched by NIH Director Francis Collins, MD, PhD, to call attention to the real-world effects of the budget sequestration on biological research in labs across the country. Today the agency detailed for the first time the way it plans to carry out the mandatory cuts, including funding fewer new and competing grants and trimming the budget of existing awards. From an article in Science Insider:
As a result, NIH expects to fund 8283 new and competing research grants this year, a drop of 703, according to this table. That number firms up the "hundreds fewer" awards that NIH officials warned of earlier this year. Including ongoing (already awarded) grants that are ending, the total number of research grants will drop by 1357 to 34,902 awards. The decline "reflects the fact that NIH's budget is being shrunk due to the new budget and political reality, which is bad news for researchers and the patients they are trying to help," says Tony Mazzaschi of the Association of American Medical Colleges in Washington, D.C.
Individual institutes are also announcing their plans for cuts, the article says.