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Policy

Financial Impact Of Genome Project Grows

by Andrea Widener
June 17, 2013 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 91, ISSUE 24

The federal government’s investment in the Human Genome Project has yielded almost $1 trillion in financial return for the economy, according to a new study from Battelle, a nonprofit research organization. That includes more than 53,000 jobs related to genomics, $293 billion in personal income, and $55 billion in local and state tax revenue through 2012. The study, funded by the advocacy group United for Medical Research, is an update from a 2011 report also done by Battelle. The government’s initial investment was almost $4 billion from 1990 to 2003, which means a return of $178 for each dollar the government spent. If the additional nearly $9 billion that the government has spent on genomics research since 2003 is included, the ratio is $65 for every dollar of government investment. “The Human Genome Project has paid back extraordinary dividends on the U.S. government’s investment,” says Carrie Wolinetz, president of United for Medical Research. “This report illustrates the vital role that key federal research funding plays in growing the U.S. economy.”

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