However, this does not mean things cannot improve if the U.S. develops a strategic plan, such as it did for HIV/ AIDS. In just a little over a generation, AIDS went from being a terminal disease to a manageable one. And, considering there are plenty of scientists taking up the cause, like American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology member and “Rock Doc” Samuel E. Gandy of the Mount Sinai School of Medicine, hope for Alzheimer’s disease may be on the horizon.
But, as Collins noted in his remarks at the briefing, it will take more than just support. In our aging society, chronic, debilitating diseases like Alzheimer’s and cancer continue to rise in incidence and create an ever-increasing burden on patients, their families and caregivers. Easing this burden will require new and innovative research models that can effectively tackle these complex disorders. And that task falls on the shoulders of our dedicated scientists, who too often toil in obscurity. Considering the importance of their work, they should be treated like rock stars, and, thanks to the efforts of groups like Geoffrey Beene Gives Back®, they just might be.
For a recap of the briefing, go to http://bit.ly/LW8RX. To learn more about the Rock Stars of Science, go to www.rockstarsofscience.org.
Nick Zagorski is a science writer at ASBMB. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.