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Biomedical Models and Resources: Current Needs and Future Opportunities 6 Criteria We set forth here some criteria for setting priorities for fields and models to support. The committee recognizes that NCRR is unlikely to be able to meet all the needs revealed in this study. We encourage NCRR to focus first on issues that support multiple models, such as facilities improvement and maintenance, animal disease and behavioral research, animal preservation technology, and noninvasive bioimaging. For grants to encourage foci of expertise and use of model animals, the major criteria must include the utility of the proposed models organisms provided or expertise provided to a wide spectrum of scientists representing a variety of NIH institutes and others in the federal government. There was a consensus in the committee on developing underused models, such as marine and invertebrate models. Proposals that do not fit well into other NIH institutes should receive attention from NCRR. For example, if a taxon being identified for study as a model is unusual and might require the special expertise of NCRR for proper review and consideration; this could be sorted out by program officers. Special attention must be provided by NCRR when wild animals have been acquired from nature, but the field resource is becoming jeopardized by habitat loss, environmental pollution, and implementation of rules related to access to biologics. Nevertheless, programmatic and funding priorities will need to be set and continually adjusted. The criteria proposed below would help in selecting models or fields to support. NCRR can have a substantial favorable effect on biomedical research in the next 5–10 years with support for research, academic and physical infrastructure, and training that benefits models that meet these criteria. The model is appropriate for its intended use(s). A specific disease model faithfully mimics the human disease. A model system is appropriate for the human system being modeled. The model can be developed, maintained, and provided at reasonable cost in relation to the perceived or potential scientific values that will accrue from it. The model is of value for more than one limited kind of research. The model is reproducible and reliable, so results can be confirmed. The model is reasonably available and accessible. NCRR has played and will continue to play a key role in the development, maintenance, and provision of important biomedical models and the infrastructure that supports their successful use. This committee strongly hopes that NCRR can use its report 1) to stimulate an increased awareness throughout NIH of the critical needs revealed by this study and NCRR's unique ability to meet these needs and 2) to catalyze increased funding for NCRR programs through a greater annual increase in the NCRR
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Biomedical Models and Resources: Current Needs and Future Opportunities budget than in previous years and through cooperative funding programs of NCRR projects by categorical institutes whose grantees rely on the resources provided.
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