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Basic research forms the first links in the chain of research, development and testing needed to yield the new healthcare treatments and technologies that the public anticipates will greatly enhance their lives and improve healthcare. For over 50 years, the National Science Foundation (NSF) has built a solid record enabling learning, discovery and innovation at the research frontier, ultimately leading to applications of great benefit to humanity. NSF invests in the best ideas generated by scientists, engineers and educators working at the frontiers of discovery and knowledge, and across all fields of research and education. NSF also emphasizes the necessity of integrating research with education, and plays a major role in training the next generation of innovators and researchers, as well as educating the science and engineering workforce and the public. Across the spectrum of biology, mathematics and physical science, social and behavioral science, geoscience, engineering, computer and information science, and education, NSF-funded research results are already serving new biomedical objectives and facilitating progress in the global arena of human health.