Legislation to reauthorize the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program has passed through the US House of Representatives and now moves on the US Senate for consideration.

The SBIR provides grants to small biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies for research and development programs focused on innovative treatments for rare diseases. Prior to the reauthorization from the House, Robert J. Beall, PhD and CEO of the foundation testified for the inclusion of a provision requiring that special attention be given to research for rare diseases when SBIR grants are awarded. Cystic Fibrosis is one of such rare diseases that would benefit from the provision.

“The SBIR grants have been an important catalyst for several of our biotech collaborators working to find a cure. This special focus for the program is a win-win for everyone,” says Beall.