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Best and worst of times for biomedical scientists

Expanding US research funding has not meant more research opportunities

Ted Agres(tedagres@lycos.com)

Despite dramatic increases in the National Institutes of Health (NIH) budget and a growing need for skilled scientists to carry out academic biomedical research, there has not been a corresponding increase in the number of new US doctorates or an increase in the percentage of these graduates taking postdoctoral positions.

Both the frequency and length of postdoc appointments for US biomedical scientists have continued to decline, while the number of foreign-born postdocs has been increasing. And while employment of biomedical scientists in industry has grown, there have been only modest increases in tenured or tenure-track academic jobs.

These findings about opportunities for biomedical scientists come from an analysis of recent survey data conducted by Paul W. Kincade, head of the immunobiology and cancer research program at the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation in Oklahoma City, along with Howard A. Garrison of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) and...

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