In his State of the Union address Tuesday night, President Barack Obama presented the United States with a vision of a better future through investment in education, infrastructure, and research. The president noted that fifty years ago American innovation played a pivotal role in the nation’s history and today holds promise for addressing the many challenges the country faces. “Maintaining our leadership in research and technology is crucial to America’s success,” he said during his State of the Union address, calling for investments in biomedical research, education, information technology and clean energy technology .
As you prepare to head to the polls on Tuesday, November 2, take a moment to look up your local candidates and see where they stand on important issues in health and research.
Research!America provides a voter education initiative Your Candidates — Your Health 2010 to help you better understand your candidates’ position and help you make a more informed decision in the voting booth.
Candidates for Congress who are on the ballot were invited to respond to the Your Candidates — Your Health 2010 questionnaire following the primary in their state or territory.
Each candidate received a letter explaining the initiative and a copy of the questionnaire. They were given the option of responding by fax, mail, e-mail or online at www.yourcandidatesyourhealth.org. Each candidate’s answers appear as entered. Candidates’ responses are only reviewed for inappropriate content (e.g., profanity). Candidates are contacted and given the opportunity to edit their responses if any content was deemed inappropriate. Responses received from candidates who are no longer running do not appear on the site.
Do you know where your candidates stand on important issues in health and research?
Neurofibromatosis (NF) encompasses a set of genetic disorders that cause benign and malignant tumors to grow along various types of nerves; it can also affect the development of bones and skin. There are three main types of NF tumors: neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1), neurofibromatosis type 2 (NF2) and schwannomatosis. NF1 is the most frequent of the three; one in every 3,000 children is born with the disease.
The Children’s Tumor Foundation (CTF) is the leading non-governmental funder of scientific research into neurofibromatosis and has funded NF studies for over 25 years. Their goal is to identify NF drug therapies and improve the lives of those living with the disorder. The Foundation also endeavors to increase public awareness of NF and provides resources for NF patients and their families.
A new study involving data from more than 20,000 individuals has uncovered several DNA sequences linked to impaired pulmonary function. The research, an analysis that combined the results of several smaller studies, provides insight into the mechanisms involved in reaching full lung capacity. The findings may ultimately lead to better understanding of lung function and diseases like asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), the fourth leading cause of death in the United States.
Author disclosure of financial associations with commercial entities that have an interest in the research published in medical journals is common practice. The information provided in the disclosure helps readers assess the degree of commercial influence over the work. Recently, however, differing journal policies have led to unintentional omissions and there have been calls for medical journals to standardize their conflict of interest policies.