Nearly five months into FY 2003, legislators have hammered out a final budget, handing healthy raises to both of the major US life science funding agencies. For the fiscal year that began last October 1, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) will receive $27.16 billion — an increase of $3.79 billion or 16.2% over last year's funding, and the final installment in the agency's five-year budget-doubling campaign.

While the measure is late and some $10 million shy of the Bush administration's requested $27.17 billion for NIH, it's close enough. "It's a remarkable achievement and a remarkable investment for biomedical research," said Steven L. Teitelbaum, president of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB). "We are very pleased and excited and grateful for our champions in Congress and in the biomedical communities," he told The Scientist.

"We can all declare victory on this remarkable five-year campaign," said Bill...

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