The study, commissioned by the agency, acknowledged the difficulty in forecasting the benefits of research backed by the the state program, which is unprecedented in California history. But the report said,
"We find that nearly half of Californians aged 50 and older will develop diabetes during their lifetime. Furthermore, more than one-third will experience a stroke, and between 5 and 8 percent will develop either breast, colorectal, lung, or prostate cancer.
"Taking into account the high prevalence and the social and economic burden of these diseases, an intervention that reduces the incidence of these selected cancers, diabetes, and stroke by 50 percent would generate almost $900 billion in social value between 2018 and 2050.
"A more modest 10 percent decline in incidence translates to $175 billion in social value during the same period. Put in this context, the CIRM investment would be worthwhile if it increased our chances of success even modestly. Against the billions of dollars in disease burden facing California, the relatively small initial investment is already paying dividends as researchers work to bring new therapies to patients."
Here is a link to an item on the CIRM blog about the study.