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[The information follows:]
East Lansing, Michigan. Development of a systems approach to forage management and means to reduce quality deterioration in forages. $175,000, one scientist. Columbia, Missouri. Improvement of forage content of minerals and other nutri: and forage production practices and utilization. $175,000 planned, scientist not - yet. Wooster, Ohio. Improvement of silage utilization and development of improved grass and legume varieties. $125,000, scientist not hired yet. St. Paul, Minnesota. Evaluate forage sources of protein and digestible energy, and preservation procedures for silage. $125,000, one scientist. Ames, Iowa. Improve digestibility of forages and develop energy efficient forage production systems. $125,000 planned, scientist not hired yet. Ithaca, New York. Develop methods to increase utilization of forage nutrients b dairy cattle, including improved fermentation by rumen microorganisms. jo. one scientist. University Park, Pennsylvania. Develop ways to establish forages with minimum tillage and improve forage quality measurement procedures and forage utilization by dairy cows. $125,000, scientist not hired yet.
Mr. TRAxLER. Have there been any problems in staffing these facilities as a result of the hiring freeze?
Dr. KINNEY. Yes. We offered a position to a scientist for the Ohio location and to a scientist for the Pennsylvania location. Both scientists accepted but their appointments were blocked by the freeze. Progress on hiring scientists for the Missouri and Iowa clusters has also been impacted by the freeze.
Mr. TRAxler. Are there any changes from the Carter budget in the funding levels you are describing to us today?
Dr. KINNEY. No, there are not. Our fiscal year 1982 budget includes an increase of $300,000 for basic research in dairy cattle nutrition and engineering.
ANIMAL PROTECTION RESEARCH
Mr. TRAxler. You also briefly described in your statement an increase of funds for animal protection research. Can you tell us how this increase will be used, and how the other funds in the animal protection research program are being used?
Dr. KINNEY. Current animal protection research funds are used to support research on diseases and pests affecting livestock. The research includes comprehensive studies involving virology, bacteriology, parasitology, biochemistry, endocrinology, entomology, immunology, and genetics. The research aim is primarily to develop improved methods to diagnose, control, or eradicate livestock diseases of major economic importance such as salmonellosis in poultry, mastitis in cattle, and pseudorabies in swine, or those of public health importance such as brucellosis and tuberculosis. This research is performed at various USDA animal disease research laboratories or at universities through cooperative agreements. The increase in funds for animal protection research will primarily be used to fund cooperative agreements at universities, to develop improved methods of disease, parasite and insect control in livestock and poultry. Research will include the development of methods to control respiratory and enteric diseases of cattle and swine, scrapie and other slow virus diseases of sheep, respiratory diseases of poultry, and methods to control insects which affect livestock, either as parasites or through transmission of diseases. The research will employ recent technological advances such as genetic
engineering, cell-mediated immunity, monoclonal antibodies, and subunit vaccines.
Mr. TRAXLER. I discussed the general issue of animal agriculture research briefly with Secretary Block when he was before us. He noted that the conference held in Michigan in May of 1980, “Animal Agriculture: Research to Meet Human Needs in the 21st Century," helped to establish certain priorities for future animal research. The Secretary also indicated that animal research should receive a major emphasis, and I am in complete agreement with him on that point. Can you give me your general assessment of our animal agriculture research needs?
Dr. KINNEY. There have been no substantive increases in research funds for animal agriculture during the past 20 years.
There is a need for a substantial increase in funds for basic and applied research with animals. The basic research is needed to generate new technology. The applied research is needed to provide information for producers that can be used on the farm to improve the efficiency of producing animal products.
The proceedings of the conference on "Animal Agriculture: Research to Meet Human Needs in the 21st Century" does an excellent job of identifying the highest priorities in animal research. The research areas directly related to improving the efficiency of animal production identified in the conference include:
Firstly, animal reproduction and genetics. Specific research needs in this area are: improving the efficiency of reproduction; utilization of germplasm; and basic research to increase muscle growth and protein production.
Secondly, animal nutrition and digestive physiology. Research needs in this area are: cellular processes associated with protein synthesis and animal growth; microbiology of the digestive system; nutrient conservation controlling feed intake; nutrition of conventional feed sources; and nutritional characterization of feedstuffs.
Thirdly, animal health. Research needs in this area are: genetic engineering for disease resistance and immunity; development of an interdisciplinary systems approach to prevent and reduce diseases in animals; research to reduce hazards to food animals from chemical agents; and research to eliminate human health hazards.
About 20 of USDA's top animal scientists participated in the planning of the Michigan conference and in the development of the research priorities at the conference. In general, we in the USDA believe that the research needs identified in the Michigan conference are to research areas that warrant additional funding to insure the efficiency production of high-quality food from animals at reasonable prices.
Mr. TRAXLER. To what extent have the findings of the Michigan conference helped you in establishing research goals?
Dr. KINNEY. The Michigan conference on animal agriculture was extremely broad in scope, covering all areas of research of concern to policymakers, producers, and consumers to insure the production of an adequate supply of nutritious and wholesome food from animals. The research goals identified at the conference will be ext ely important in developing long-range research programs
for the future. They are currently being used by industry, state, and USDA research organizations in planning for future programs. Mr. TRAXLER. Do you know at this point what your position will be in terms of requests for research authorization when you go before the legislative Agriculture Committees? Dr. KINNEY. The Department is currently formulating specific recommendations on the revision of Title XIV of the Farm Bill and those recommendations are not yet complete. However, the Department has reaffirmed its support for research in animal productivity. Animal health is viewed as an important part of the needs. Mr. TRAxLER. How do you believe your current animal research posture compares with our actual needs? Dr. KINNEY. Current funding for animal research is clearly inadequate to generate new technology necessary to produce food from animals at reasonable cost in the future. The report of the Regional and National Planning Committees and National Research Planning Committee to the Joint Council on Food and Agricultural Sciences, July 1980, identifies an increase of 20 percent by 1984 for animal research. The proceedings of the Michigan conference on animal agriculture identified the high-priority research needs in animal agriculture. On the basis of the recommendations in the Michigan conference, a significant increase over the 20 percent is needed on animal research in the next 10 years to insure the public of a nutritious, high-quality diet at reasonable prices.
Mr. TRAxleR. Secretary Block also told me that he plans to maintain USDA's capacity to do toxicology research at a high level. We also discussed this subject last year. At that time, you told me that it was necessary to develop a supply of trained people to do the job. As I understand the situation, young researchers are often attracted by the higher salaries of private industry, leaving a void in your ability to meet this most critical need. Has there been any change in conditions in the past year?
Dr. KINNEY. Young researchers with all levels of toxicological training and expertise, and in addition those trained in pathology, continue to be attracted by the higher salaries of private industry; however, we have been fortunate in this last year in attracting a few very well qualified recent Ph.D.'s with expertise in specific areas of toxicological research. We are continuing with graduate training programs with universities near USDA laboratories in an attempt to develop qualified scientists.
Mr. TRAXLER. You also told me that your facilities to do toxicology research are understaffed. Has this situation changed at all?
Dr. KINNEY. Our facilities for toxicological research remain understaffed for a variety of reasons in addition to the shortage of trained personnel. These include personnel ceilings and budget constraints brought about by competing needs for funds for other research. We are working to synchronize hiring of new trained personnel with a planned, orderly development of our toxicological research facilities.
Mr. TRAXLER. Do you believe that some type of cooperative agreement with other institutions might be in our best interest of meeting toxicology research needs?
Dr. KINNEY. A strong in-house program is essential to meet the major part of our toxicology research needs. However, cooperative agreements can be quite effective in this regard. We utilize cooperative agreements with outside laboratories, when appropriate, to complement our in-house expertise and facilities in order to most efficiently bring the greatest expertise and sophisticated facilities and equipment to bear on specific problems.
Mr. TRAXLER. Is there any existing USDA facility that can tie together pathology, toxicology, biochemistry, pesticide research, epidemiology and clinical toxicology in one basic project on food toxicology research, or do you find that your personnel levels in any of these areas is insufficient?
Dr. KINNEY. At present there is no such facility. We are building multidisciplinary research expertise in pathology, toxicology, biochemistry, pesticide research, epidemiology and chemical toxicology at our existing AR facilities at Athens, Georgia, and Albany, California, but the groups are not yet complete because of the previously mentioned constraints on personnel.
Mr. TRAXLER. Have there been any increased efforts in toxicology research as it affects the food chain at any other federal institution in the past year?
Dr. KINNEY. We do not have any knowledge that research at other federal agencies which affects the food chain has been increased within the past year.
Mr. TRAXLER. Is it fair to say that you still maintain that the present system can be improved by training and supporting the scientific manpower needed for developing surveillance and toxicity testing methods?
Dr. KINNEY. We believe that we can develop both a flexible, responsive staff and state-of-the-art facilities and equipment within AR if we receive continuing support in funds and personnel ceilings. This would enable federal leadership to provide coordination and direction over all USDA programs.
Mr. TRAXLER. Last year you told me that you believed that a study aimed at determining USDA's role to toxicology research within the broad national framework that exists could be useful. Do you maintain this view?
Dr. KINNEY. We do need a study of the availability of personnel trained in all phases of toxicology, including pathologic examination, to help determine USDA's potential role in toxicology research. HHS is currently performing such a study, and we hope that the results will be available to assist in making appropriate recommendations for a broader USDA effort to further determine USDA's role in toxicological research relative to our food supply.
Mr. TRAXLER. Can you describe for me the type of study you believe should be developed, the cost involved with such a study, the time required and the personnel required?
Dr. KINNEY. We cannot comment specifically on the type and scope of study to be developed until the results of the Department of Health and Human Service study becomes available.
Mr. TRAXLER. Given the reduction in federal employment, do you believe that you have sufficient personnel to perform such a study as a present time?
Dr. KINNEY. Until we have determined the scope of the needed study, we cannot comment on the sufficiency of our personnel to perform it satisfactorily. I would like to add that to increase the efficiency of our present staff we are planning efforts to assure that our toxicology program within AR is more closely integrated with the needs of production and marketing research.
HUMAN NUTRITION RESEARCH Mr. TRAXLER. Dr. Hegsted, I want you to know that I consider your role in upgrading our research on matters of human nutrition vitally important. After all, our concern must be for improving the diet of all of our people. As Secretary Bergland was fond of saying, we know more about feeding pigs than we do about feeding people. Can you tell me what appears to be some of the major developments in your work over the past year?
Dr. HEGSTED. Thank you, Mr. Traxler. We appreciate your comment and support. We do have much to learn about human nutrition but that does not mean the research effort of the past has not been successful. Human nutrition research inevitably requires considerable time and there are few dramatic breakthroughs. All findings of any importance must be repeated by other investigators and under various conditions to be generally accepted. Some of the more significant recent developments from our own research effort were:
The demonstration that a reduction in the intake of saturated fat with a moderate increase in polyunsaturated fat lowers blood pressure. While it is generally accepted that high salt intake is a factor in hypertension, the evidence accumulates that other factors are also involved in the high prevalence of hypertension in this country.
We have continued studies on the effects of the level of dietary protein and dietary fiber upon mineral absorption. Although there is a great deal of evidence indicating that Americans should increase their consumption of dietary fiber, there is also evidence that excessive dietary fiber may have unfavorable effects upon mineral utilization. The data indicate that not all forms of dietary fiber have this effect and that moderate increases in intake do not seriously impair mineral utilization. High levels of protein intake which characterize the American diet do appear to increase the need for several minerals, especially calcium.
An extensive examination of the nutrient content of beef and pork products indicates that the iron content of these products is substantially less than previously thought.
Preliminary reports of the results obtained in the Nationwide Food Consumption Survey have appeared. Total energy intake of Americans appears to have fallen considerably in the past 10 years. The nutrient content of the diet appears to have been maintained or improved. The nutritional quality of the diet of low income groups more nearly approaches that of higher income groups than in the past. Fat and cholesterol intakes have fallen slightly but sugar intakes have probably increased.
The disease acrodermatitis enteropathica is a severe zinc deficiency which appears in affected infants at weaning. It is apparently due to a genetic defect which prevents the proper absorption of