The sequester reduces the NIH budget by 5.1% starting Oct. 1 and by 8.2% on an annualized basis, on top of a decade of stagnant funding, write FasterCures Chairman Michael Milken and Elias Zerhouni, a former NIH director. The impact will be fewer bright young Americans seeking careers in life sciences, fewer life-saving medical advances and lost competitiveness as China, Japan, India, South Korea and the U.K. increase investments, they write. "Funding newly trained scientists is not an entitlement, a bet on unproven technologies or a mere expense," they write.

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