CTSI Newsletter - December 2007

This is the inaugural online edition of the Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI) eNewsletter for December 2007. The purpose of the eNewsletter is to keep you informed of key CTSI activities and their impact on the UCSF community. We hope you enjoy this issue and encourage your feedback.

In this Edition

From the Executive Director’s Desk

During my 18 years at UC, first as a researcher and then in research management, I’ve had the pleasure of working with some of the most innovative, committed and creative faculty and staff. However, none has been as satisfying as my current position, working with you at CTSI, UCSF. I am grateful for the unique opportunity provided to me, to work with you to facilitate breaking down barriers and limitations to bringing innovative research discoveries to their full realization. As I am coming to understand, there is very little that doesn’t impact this process.

CTSI’s mission is to train future translational researchers, to enhance and integrate campus infrastructure, and to build an environment using technology, cultural and institutional changes to help us connect and collaborate. Campus leadership has been supportive of this mission and actively advocates for us. You have all embraced the vision. I am always thrilled to hear of occasions when people have come to you or to me with an issue they believe CTSI could potentially positively impact. More than anything, CTSI is seen as a catalyst for positive change. This is in large part due to the fantastic people in our CTSI programs; your enthusiasm and willingness to lead this transformation has inspired others to join us.

CTSI has just passed its first birthday. While I recognize that we need to stay focused on accomplishing our goals, it is important for us to pause and take stock of all that we have accomplished. Program teams have been developed, goals and strategies written, and we have announced to the campus that CTSI is “open for business” and is serious about its mission. This is no small feat and is an ongoing process. As Executive Director, I am proud to hear the wonderful feedback from faculty and staff who have benefited from CTSI and its services. This positive feedback is reflected by NIH/NCRR and our partner CTSAs and it is abundantly clear to me that UCSF is an innovative leader.

While CTSI has many successes, some of which you will read about in this newsletter, we do need to continually assess if we are investing our time and resources on those activities that have the greatest impact on achieving our mission. Every one of us at CTSI must maintain the agility to seize new opportunities as they arise. We must work in a coordinated fashion to trim initiatives that do not have the impact we envisioned. This is a dramatic cultural change for us in academia but an essential one if we are to realize our mission in a soft funding environment. As we conclude 2007 and head into 2008, I’d like to see us continue to get the word out about CTSI’s mission, encourage others to join us, and to focus on the tactics and strategies that have the greatest impact at UCSF. We are all committed to the common goal of “Better health to more people more quickly!”

I know that 2008 will be a year of both great challenges and opportunities and we are poised to deliver on our mission. I wish you all a wonderful Holiday Season!

Susan A. Autry, MBA

Executive Director, CTSI

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New Resources

Gain access to successful K08 and K23 proposals!

CTSI launches career development library with examples of successful K08 and K23 grant proposals. This resource, available only for UCSF investigators, was made possible by the generosity of individual successful investigators, to whom we are very grateful. Thanks to Dr. Kristine Yaffe and Wanda Rieman for making this a reality! To get access to this resource, contact us at ctsi@ucsf.edu.

New on the CTSI Website

The Clinical Research Center (CRC) launches new presence on the CTSI website. Learn more about the range of services provided by the CRC.

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Featured Story

Translational Technologies & Resources (TTR) kicks off first-ever retreat for Core Managersat UCSF

CTSI’s Translational Technologies & Resources (TTR) hosted a first-ever retreat for campus core leaders and affiliates on November 6th at the Presidio’s Golden Gate Club. Against a backdrop of views of the Golden Gate Bridge, nearly 75 attendees heard presentations from Keith Yamamoto, Executive Vice-Dean of the School of Medicine and Mike McCune, CTSI PI, engaged in round-table conversations on common challenges faced, and brainstormed solutions.

The excitement in the room was palpable. McCune reemphasized the importance of cores to the research community. Yamamoto provided a first-of-its kind vision of an integrated cores management structure. Bill Hyun, from the Lab for Cell Analysis Core Facility, commented “We’re hoping this is a first step in the development of a UCSF-wide business plan for cores, which in turn will ensure UCSF’s continuing success as a preeminent research institution.”

Among other highlights, CTSI’s Virtual Home and TTR previewed a tool, to be rolled out early in 2008, which will allow for searches on information about technology cores at UCSF. The search tool and accompanying database will allow researchers to get answers to questions such as: Is there an imaging facility at Mission Bay? Which cores provide assay services at Parnassus? Other information, including the full range of services available for any core, where it is located, and who to contact for pricing, will also be accessible through the search tool.

Robert Smith, TTR’s Coordinator of Academic Services who facilitated the organization of the retreat, enthused, “It was rewarding to see the vision of this retreat come to life – and it far surpassed our expectations!”

For presentations from the retreat, view the TTR Resources page. If you are a core manager and would like to contribute your information to the technology cores database, please contact Robert Smith directly at 415-502-2129 or robert.smith@radiology.ucsf.edu

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Updates and Announcements

CTSI senior leadership retreat

A CTSI Senior Leadership Retreat will be held in March 2008. At the retreat, Program Directors will present their programs' progress and future direction. This meeting will be for CTSI board of directors and program directors. CTSI Central will provide more information soon.

NIH annual progress report (APR) in March 2008

The NIH annual progress report is due to CTSI Central on March 30, 2008. We will provide more specific information and a template that includes content description, format required, and submission logistics in the New Year.

Resource Allocation Program (RAP) closes first round of applications

The newly-formed Resource Allocation Program (RAP), including funding agencies Clinical & Translational Science Institute-Strategic Opportunities Support Center (CTSI-SOS) (CTSI), UCSF - Gladstone Institute of Virology & Immunology Center for AIDS Research (CFAR), Research Evaluation and Allocation Committee (REAC) and Cancer Center - Clinical Investigator Research Program (CIRP) - Mount Zion Health Fund closed its first round of applications on December 17th, receiving 125 proposals. Decisions will be made in Spring ’08. CTSI facilitated the formation of RAP, and CTSI’s Virtual Home worked with each of the funding agencies to produce the integrated online portal.

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Please submit news from your CTSI program for possible inclusion in the “Updates & Announcements” section. We also appreciate any and all feedback. Please contact us by email at ctsi@ucsf.edu.