A Future Catalyzing, Accelerating and Transforming Translation
Our activities at work, and the world around us, continue to change in ever more dynamic and fast-paced ways. Adapting to these changes has allowed the NUCATS Institute to thrive, and it is ongoing adaptation that will enable us to flourish in the future.
As one of more than 60 NIH National Center for Advancing Translational Science Clinical and Translational Sciences Award-funded hubs – with strong and generous institutional support from Northwestern — we continue to strengthen and create critical resources, training, and educational opportunities that our members rely on.
Since launching in 2008, the Northwestern University Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute has made an undeniable impact on the scientific landscape. We have supported more than 3,000 academic publications and annually, we facilitate more than $1 million in competitive pilot research projects that seed new NIH applications.
This Impact Report details some of our accomplishments over the past year, which include:
• A transformative project that has started across Northwestern to disrupt and overcome systemic barriers that still impede the equitable career advancement of faculty from groups that have been historically excluded from biomedical research. This award from the NIH Faculty Institutional Recruitment for Sustainable Transformation Program, with generous added support from Northwestern, will enable hiring of new faculty in clusters covering topics from cells to community in the areas of cancer, cardiovascular, and neuro-behavioral sciences. Numerous NUCATS members played instrumental roles in applying for the grant, a process led by principal investigators Melissa Simon, MD, MPH; Eric Perreault, PhD; and Clyde Yancy, MD, MSc.
• With support from the NUCATS Institute and CTSA Trial Innovation Network, NIH awarded Rod Passman, MD, a groundbreaking, clinical trial (REACT-AF) of a “temporal precision medicine” strategy using a wearable to manage stroke prevention for patients with atrial fibrillation. The trial will include more than 80 sites nationally.
• The creation of a new Research Ethics and Equity Consultation Service co-led by Seema Shah, JD, and Irene Blanco, MD, MS.
• The addition of a new Master of Science in Clinical Investigation (MSCI) course on community-engaged research and the inclusion of “Antiracist Strategies for Clinical and Translational Research” as a core course of the MSCI program.
• The Alliance for Research in Chicagoland Communities (ARCC) Community-Academic Anti-Racism Learning Collaborative expanded its diverse mix of community and academic partners to engage together in a supportive space to question, learn, and address how racism operates in research institutions and through their policies.
NUCATS remains committed to improving health for all, as well as advancing and advocating for diversity, equity, inclusion, belongingness, and anti-racism in all aspects of our work. With our community, national, and CTSA partners, we will persevere, learn, and adapt. We look forward to any feedback you have about our progress over the past year and are eager to hear how we can help your research have greater impact.
Written by NUCATS Director Richard D'Aquila