How the Shutdown Is Devastating Biomedical Scientists And Killing Their Research

Brandon Keim | Wired | October 3, 2013

The federal shutdown’s effects on science and medicine are many. There’s halted food safety inspections, kids with cancer who won’t be able to join clinical drug trials, and suspension of disease outbreak monitoring. Conservation studies have been thrown into disarray and at least one NASA Mars mission is at risk of being delayed for years.

But one area where the devastating effects aren’t getting much public attention is basic biomedical research. What’s happening to the thousands of researchers and billions of dollars dedicated to understanding human disease and development? I talked to a government biomedical scientist about the shutdown’s effect. Because the scientist was instructed not to speak with the media, this person will remain anonymous. Below is an edited version of what the scientist told me.