ASBMB statement on NIH’s budget for fiscal year 2024

Sept. 8, 2023

The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology is deeply concerned about the proposed cuts to the National Institute of Health’s budget in the House Labor Health and Human Services appropriations bill for FY2024. This bill proposes a 9.1% cut from FY2023 and specifically cuts the budget for the National Institute of General Medical Sciences. In contrast, the Senate Labor House, Health and Human Services and Education and Related appropriations bill maintains flat funding for the NIH, which will allow the agency to continue funding lifesaving and innovative scientific research.

Over 84% of NIH’s funding is awarded for extramural research, supporting more than 300,000 researchers at over 2,500 universities, medical schools, and other research institutions in every single state. NIH funding has contributed to the development of 354 out of 356 drugs approved from 2010 to 2019; that's the real value of NIH funding — investing in treatments that save lives — and why Congress must continue to support NIH and all the vital scientific research it funds.

The NIH is the largest federal funder of biomedical research, with almost half of its funding going to basic scientific research, which is key to building the foundation for breakthrough discoveries and treatments.

NIGMS is one of the agency’s major funders of basic scientific research. However, the House appropriations bill for fiscal year 2024 will cut $85 million from NIGMS’ budget through the Public Health Service Act.

Every year, about a third of NIGMS’s budget comes from Public Health Service funding. In FY2023, NIGMS received $1.41 billion through PHS — this funding goes directly to federally funded scientists across the country through research project grants. An $85 million cut would have devastating consequences for the U.S. research enterprise.

NIGMS would have to cease funding about 425 R01 grants, affecting hundreds of scientists, students, and research personnel across the country. We urge Congress to prevent this cut from being included in the final appropriations bill. Scientists rely on federal funding to push scientific progress forward, to improve the health of Americans, to train the next generation of scientists, and to keep our country competitive in science and technology.