NIH joins campaign to ease SBA grant restrictions

The National Institutes of Health has thrown its weight behind lobbying efforts aimed at lifting restrictions that block biotech firms from SBA grant money. The SBA was automatically refusing to give grants to firms that are majority-owned by venture capital groups. NIH director Elias A. Zerhouni asked the SBA to drop the restriction for biotech companies, saying it perversely cut out companies whose early research success had attracted significant VC support. The Biotechnology Industry Organization has been actively working to change the rules governing SBA grants.

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