§ Mr. Matthew Taylor
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (1) how much money the Medical Research Council spent in 1993–94 on(a) research into asthma and (b) research which may be relevant to the condition;
(2) how much money the Medical Research Council plans to spend in the current year and in 1995–96 on (a) research into asthma and (b) research which may be relevant to the condition.
Mr. Robert G. Hughes
In the financial year 1993–94, the Medical Research Council's expenditure on research projects directly related to asthma was £0.9 million. Further spending on research which may be relevant to the condition totalled almost £1.1 million. The decision on funding for asthma research in the current year and in 1995–96 rests with the MRC. It will depend, as with all1030W other research areas, on the quality of the research proposals that the Council receives. The MRC is, of course, willing to consider soundly based proposals in competition with other applications for council support, and funding decisions are dependent upon a peer review process.
On 3 October, MRC and the Departments of Health and of the Environment issued a combined call for research proposals on the links between air pollution and respiratory disease, with a special emphasis on asthma. Up to £5 million has been allocated to support this programme over the next four to five years.