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Spina Bifida

Volume 451: debated on Wednesday 1 November 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much her Department will spend on research into spina bifida in the current financial year. (96441)

The main agency through which the Government support biomedical research is the Medical Research Council (MRC). The MRC is an independent body funded by the Department of Trade and Industry via the Office of Science and Innovation.

The MRC is currently funding the following two projects relevant to spina bifida:

Professor A. Copp, Institute of Child Health, London—“Neurodegeneration Before Birth: Can Inositol Increase Prevention of Neural Tube Defects in Conjunction with Folic Acid?” The total amount granted for this project is £122,000 of which some £59,000 will be paid in 2006-07; and

Dr. K. Storey, University of Dundee—“Specification and Regulation of Vertebrae Neural Tube Precursors”. Expenditure on this £1.1 million fellowship during 2006-07 is expected to be around £99,000.

Over 75 per cent. of the Department's total expenditure on health research is devolved to and managed by national health service organisations. Details of individual projects, including a number concerned with spina bifida, are available on the national research register at:

www.dh.gov.uk/research