State decision puts USF research in jeopardy

A state decision to limit funding on certain research grants may hinder the last two years of projects by researchers at USF and the Moffitt Cancer Center.

The decision by the state will affect recipients of the James and Esther King and Bankhead-Coley Biomedical Research Programs grants. Researchers were told by officials they could begin applying for new grants to make up for this funding.

In a letter of protest to the Florida Biomedical Research Advisory Council, the grant recipients warned of the possible effects the funding cuts might have on their research.

“To halt work mid-way through these projects will not only stop the progress of important research, but will at least partially waste valuable taxpayer money that has already been spent on these projects if they cannot be completed,” the letter said.

Drs. Hamisu Salihu and Cesario Borlongan both signed the letter, which urged state officials at the council to do everything in their power to keep funding from being discontinued. The grants in danger support research into tobacco-related illnesses.

— Staff Report