While scientists who study conditions such as cancer, heart disease, or stroke can present alarming statistics to highlight a need for funding for their research, those who study rare diseases can find it hard to compete for research dollars. But rare does not mean unimportant, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), which announced it will devote $71 million to launch the first clinical studies of its Rare Diseases Clinical Research Network.
More than 20 studies are expected to open in the next few months at about 50 sites in the United States and other countries.
Hampton T. Rare Disease Research Gets Boost. JAMA. 2006;295(24):2836-2838. doi:10.1001/jama.295.24.2836