New NIEHS Associate Director Focuses on Moving Research Results from the Lab to the Bedside
How does the discovery of a medical breakthrough in the lab find its way into your doctor's office? It's a process called "translational biomedicine" which focuses on moving research results from scientific study into clinical practice.
Schmalfeldt: How does the discovery of a medical breakthrough in the lab find its way into your doctor's office? It's a process called "translational biomedicine" which focuses on moving research results from scientific study into clinical practice. Dr. William J. Martin is the new Associate Director for Translational Biomedicine at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. He talked about some of the roadblocks in getting research from the lab to the bedside.
Martin: First of all, it's expensive and time-consuming to do translational research. Both the questions and the answers are complex. For example, there are thousands of new and important discoveries being made very year — perhaps even every week. We really lack the training and the information processing systems to efficiently move this process forward. In addition, the typical grant funding mechanisms do not adequately support translational research.
Schmalfeldt: Doctor Martin discussed some of the ways the National Institutes of Health is working to remove some of those obstacles.
Martin: The Clinical and Translational Science Awards announced last October (were) really an NIH-wide effort to address this. More recently, NIEHS has announced the "DISCOVER Programs" which also will promote translational research within the institute.
Schmalfeldt: Doctor Martin said that developing a more integrated program in environmental research, where there are more researchers trained and involved in this field, will allow for more rapid dissemination and translation of research findings so they can be used to improve health. From the National Institutes of Health, I'm Bill Schmalfeldt in Bethesda, Maryland.
About This Audio Report
Reporter: Bill Schmalfeldt
Sound Bite: Dr. William J. Martin