Biomedical research and development is a continuing process. New knowledge yields new drugs, devices, and procedures; the study of how the products act yields more knowledge; refinements in knowledge then enable the development of even better therapies. Whether an idea originates in a university laboratory or starts with basic product research carried out in the private sector, important findings percolate through the entire scientific community. Each new finding serves as a building block for establishing a deeper understanding of human health and disease. The 1986 Technology Transfer Act codified and fostered partnerships between NIH research and private-sector development of therapeutic products.