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The UCSF Clinical and Translational Science Institute
A View To The Future Of Research
San Francisco, CA
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Additional Information

Principal Investigator: Joseph M. McCune, MD

Abstract

Despite explosive gains in our understanding of the basic mechanisms of human disease, meaningful translation of this knowledge to the treatment and prevention of disease has moved slowly. To accelerate the pace at which discoveries in basic science can serve the health of our patients and community, the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) intends to establish a Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI). Its mission will be to create a comprehensive, integrated academic home that promotes research and education in clinical and translational science at UCSF, at affiliated institutions, and in participating communities. Its goals are: 1) to support, enhance, and integrate existing training programs, increasing the number of trainees from diverse disciplines and improving the quality of their training in clinical and translational research methods; 2) to support, improve, and integrate existing infrastructure to enhance the design and implementation of clinical and translational studies, fostering collaborations to achieve a diverse spectrum of high-quality, original research; 3) to enhance career development of clinical and translational researchers by providing mentoring and opportunities to catalyze original research, and by changing the academic culture to appropriately reward multidisciplinary collaborative work; and 4) to create a "virtual home" providing contemporary communications to simplify collaboration, to provide an optimal informatics matrix for conducting innovative research, and to nurture the growth of clinical and translational science. To reach these goals, UCSF is transforming its clinical and translational research organization to establish 13 interrelated programs that will provide the training, services, and opportunities needed. These programs are led by senior scientists drawn from diverse disciplines in each of UCSF's four health science schools—dentistry, medicine, nursing, and pharmacy—and its graduate division. The plans reflect input from more than 200 interested, energetic, and committed participants from throughout the community, including most of UCSF's academic leaders. These individuals worked collaboratively to ensure inclusion, transparency, and flexibility in the design and planned implementation of the CTSI. UCSF believes that this infusion of new energy and resources will create and sustain a rich environment for innovative research and drive the realization of UCSF's full potential to educate and to support the work of clinical and translational scientists. If so, biomedicine will be advanced and the health of our patients and the community will benefit.

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Photo: Joseph DeRisi, Ph.D., in his lab at the University of California, San Francisco. (Photo by Felix Aburto, courtesy of UCSF)