A posting to President Barack Obama’s citizens’ website proposes axing the National Institutes of Health’s National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, and invites visitors to vote and comment on this proposal.

The purpose of the citizen feedback is to gauge opinion on this and other matters, not to make final decisions.

“Biomedical research funding is falling because of the nation’s budget problems, but biomedical research itself has never been more promising, with rapid progress being made on a host of diseases,” the website notes. “Here’s a way to increase the available funding to NIH without increasing the NIH budget: halt funding to NCCAM, the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine … Defunding NCCAM would save at least $225 million, possibly more.”

Among the current research projects funded by NCCAM are: “Effect of Massage on Chronic Low Back Pain” and “Therapeutic Massage for Generalized Anxiety Disorder,” both due to be completed in August; “Neuroendocrine Mechanisms of Developmental Massage Therapy in Preterm Infants,” due to be completed in April 2010; “Massage Therapy Effects on Cerebrospinal Fluid Neurochemistry,” due to be completed in June 2010; and “Multi-System Evaluation of Massage Therapy on HIV+ Adolescents,” due to be completed in July 2012.

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