Center for Health + Technology
The University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) has established a Center for Health + Technology (CHeT) whose mission is to conduct hypothesis-driven, rigorously designed, initial investigations of novel therapeutic interventions for human diseases. The Center will utilize a team of dedicated clinical researchers and research cores to efficiently conduct initial clinical trials in diseases targeted by the URMC Strategic Plan. The investigators will draw upon interventions discovered at URMC translational centers, in addition to forming national and global consortia of expert clinical investigators collaborating with URMC leadership. The Center intends to recruit additional individuals with particular interests in research design and biostatistics for early phase clinical research, in clinical pharmacology, in disease modeling and in the clinical investigations of the diseases identified in the Strategic Plan. The initial focus will be on musculoskeletal, cardiovascular, neurologic, infectious/immunologic disorders and cancer.
The difficult rub of translational investigation has been moving novel interventions from preclinical evaluation into the first human clinical trials. Initial investigation of novel interventions in individuals with disease has not traditionally been a focus of academic institutions, but this stage of research draws on many of the strengths of the URMC. A robust group of discovery translational centers are identifying potentially breakthrough therapeutic interventions in an array of diseases. Individual centers and departments have driven novel product development, including vaccine development and viral drug treatments from the infectious disease program, cardiovascular medications and device intervention from the Heart Research Follow-up Program, novel trials of lymphoma from the Cancer Center, and novel interventions for neurodegenerative disorders in the Department of Neurology. Their collective strengths will be augmented by the creation of the multi-disciplinary Center for Human Experimental Therapeutics that facilitates and conducts initial human clinical trials.
CHET will be tightly integrated with the Clinical Translational Science Institute (CTSI) and coordinate utilization of key resources maintained within the CTSI, including the key function areas of bioinformatics, biostatistics, and regulatory support. In addition, the Clinical Trials Coordination Center (CTCC) and Clinical Materials Services Unit (CMSU) provide a robust infrastructure for supporting these research efforts. These groups have decades of collective experience in clinical research in a regulated environment, designed to develop new treatments to improve the quality-of-life of patients and families.