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Health R&D spending rises, but not federal investment

Health-related R&D spending in the US grew by 3.5 per cent, or $4.3 billion, in fiscal year 2011-12, but that rise was primarily fueled by industry, philanthropy and voluntary health associations rather than an increase in federal support, according to an analysis by the lobby group Research!America.

Although medical and health R&D spending edged upward in FY2012, virtually all of the federal contribution to the increase comes from changes in how federal spending is classified, rather than an increase in the dollars devoted to R&D, Research!America says in a report released on 17 December.

The organization says that industry spending in this area increased by $2 billion, or 3 per cent, primarily due to a $1.3 billion (7.2 per cent) increase in R&D spending by biotechnology companies.

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