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Research groups relieved by last-minute deal to delay sequestration

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Lawmakers have kicked the threat of sequestration down the road a bit, triggering some relief in the biomedical research community, which was staring down the sudden elimination of $2.5 billion in funding for the NIH. The NIH budget, the mother lode of money for basic and increasingly translational research work in the U.S., was to be slashed 8.2% unless Congress reached a deal. And every research organization in the country had been complaining loudly of the impact that would have on a research community which still sees itself as largely underfunded. The two-month delay in reaching a final deal, though, won't eliminate the threat. And the lingering fear of sequestration is spurring many of the same groups to continue their fight. "The (American Society of Hematology) will educate Congress about the value of biomedical research so that all members of the new 113th Congress understand that this is not the time to defund science and that discoveries made possible by investments in NIH generate incredible returns in the form of lives and jobs and importantly help secure America's position as a global economic force," ASH noted in a release.