Letter From the JCTS Editor: A Season of Light
As we are approaching the holiday season, which under more normal circumstances is a time to socialize with family and friends, there is a ray of hope. The year has been difficult for all of us and it certainly seems like an eternity since we had anything resembling a more normal life. Also, the bitter toll of about a quarter of a million of our fellow citizens, many that belong to underserved and vulnerable communities, succumbing to COVID-19 is something we must never forget. None of us know when this tragic COVID-19 trajectory will end. Although the road forward remains thorny, the news indicating the potential for new potent vaccines is welcome indeed. However, there are still significant mountains to climb, including the heavy lift of convincing the public that prevention, not just a vaccine, remains an essential component of a successful response to this pandemic. The importance of engaging the public in a meaningful plan to combat COVID-19 remains crucial to success. Anything short of effective public engagement has the potential to be viewed as governmental overreach and could elicit unfortunate opposition to the best of plans. Community engagement has been a major emphasis of the CTSA program, and these programs have matured substantially, offering a forum for physicians, health scientists, and the public to meet on common ground. They also provide a critical and established framework in which all can contribute to fruitful dialogue on how to best navigate a path that can lead us out of the morass where we currently find ourselves.
December is also a month that represents a change in the JCTS publication process. As of January 2021, the issues previously published every other month will transition into a continuous system where submitted papers are published once accepted. We will still maintain the opportunity to support thematic series of publications. Such collections on a thematic topic will be identified on our website in a manner that should be readily recognized by our readers. There are currently a number of such thematic collections under way with the next set focusing on data science, which will be coming early in 2021. The last formal issue in December will include 12 publications, all covering exciting areas.
Hsiao and colleagues are challenging the current framework for MD/PhD training in an editorial; and training, mentoring and education issues are also highlighted in several key papers. McCormack and colleagues analyzed the impact of COVID-19 on the CTSA TL1 and KL2 training programs and suggest strategies to mitigate this impact. A novel tool to share training and assessment resources is highlighted by Ianni and colleagues, while Schuckman and colleagues address competencies required for acute care research. Other publications include a comprehensive review by Vandivort et al addressing the unintended immune responses that may complicate development of new therapeutics. Recruitment and research network issues are highlighted in several papers. Morrato et al report on scale up of the ACT network while Minor et al describe a novel approach to reach people with long-term physical disabilities. An inventory of CTSA recruitment resources is authored by Niyibizi et al. Several publications describe survey and planning tools. Kimberley and colleagues report on evaluation tools for training of scholars in a COBRE program, and a paper by Nelson and colleagues describe planning tools to implement patient-reported outcome measures. The challenges in developing and harmonizing survey measures for a consortium focused on genome-scale sequencing will be addressed by Goddard and colleagues, and Kalichman and Mills summarize a workshop at UC San Diego on research reproducibility.
These publications illustrate the breadth of JCTS, and we encourage everyone to submit papers to the journal. In spite of all of the current challenges, there is great hope for the future and I wish everyone all the best for the coming holiday season. We will need to come through the current challenges with renewed energy and a keen sense of togetherness.
Lars Berglund, M.D., Ph.D.
Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Clinical and Translational Science (JCTS)
Translational Science 2021: Abstract Deadline Approaching
There's only one week left to submit an abstract for Translational Science 2021! Make an impact in the clinical and translational science community by showcasing your original research at this premier event!
Abstracts are due by 11:59 p.m. CT on Wednesday, December 2. Visit our website for more information.
News From the Hill: November 24, 2020
The November elections brought a shift in the balance of power to Washington with Joe Biden winning the White House for the Democrats and control of the Senate hinging on two January runoff elections in Georgia. Shortly after the election, the Republican leadership of the Senate Appropriations Committee released the twelve annual appropriations bills as “Chairman’s Marks”. This action was solely intended to facilitate negotiations with the House of Representatives (which previously passed its FY 2021 appropriations bills) on final spending measures for the year. The federal government is currently operating on a continuing appropriations resolution that is set to expire on December 11th and lawmakers appear interested in finalizing FY 2021 appropriations before the 116th Congress adjourns at the end of the year.
Read more on the ACTS Advocacy page.
Join us Thursday, December 3 at 12:00 pm CST for "Developing a Five-Year Career Plan." This 60 minute workshop will guide attendees through establishing a five-year career plan. The workshop includes completing a self analysis, setting SMART goals, planning a career with a timeline, and implementing a plan.
Click here to register. ACTS institutional and individual members can attend this live webinar for free. There is a $10 cost for non-member early career investigators, and $15 cost for non-members.
Journal of Clinical and Translational Science
Volume 4 / Issue 5 of the Journal of Clinical and Translational is now available online!
Submit your article today to be featured in future issues of JCTS! Please also visit the JCTS website for information on our themed issue related to Design, Development, Evaluation, and Dissemination of Team Science Interventions in Clinical and Translational Research.
Translational Science Today
Banking on patient samples to advance COVID-19 research
In the spring of 2020, when instruction moved online and most research became remote, efforts picked up at the UW Carbone Cancer Center Translational Science Biocore BioBank. Researchers across campus began pivoting their studies to address the...