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Montefiore in the News

October 15, 2013

Grant Funds Research to Accelerate New Treatments from Basic Science Discoveries

 October 15, 2013 – (BRONX, NY)Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University and Montefiore Medical Center have received a $25 million grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for the Harold and Muriel Block Institute for Clinical and Translational Research (ICTR) at Einstein and Montefiore. The two institutions received their initial Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) from the NIH in 2008 to launch this joint collaboration.

The purpose of the CTSA program, now a component of the NIH’s new National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS), is to support scientists and clinicians in enhancing research innovation, efficiency and quality. Its goal is to accelerate the process of translating innovations into new treatments for patients and communities.

“Translation occurs at many points in the transformation of biomedical discovery to health outcomes, and teams of investigators build the most innovative research programs,” said Harry Shamoon, M.D., principal investigator of the CTSA grant, professor of medicine, and associate dean for clinical and translational research at Einstein. “Supporting translational research is an inherently complex enterprise, since any one project involves multiple team members, scientific expertise and resources. Over the past five years, the Block ICTR has succeeded in launching new multidisciplinary projects and networks, and provided critical tools for investigators in cancer, pediatrics, rare diseases, infectious diseases, liver disorders, aging, diabetes and many others.”

The Block ICTR was founded based on the partnership between Einstein and Montefiore and has been the centerpiece of their research relationship. As both institutions adapt to the transformations in healthcare and biomedical research in increasingly challenging times, the Block ICTR provides a home where Einstein and Montefiore’s co-investments, unique strengths and natural alliances can be maximized. 

“Montefiore’s patient-centered research, innovative accountable care model and advanced information systems provide a robust and diverse research environment that we are able to leverage locally and nationally to support the CTSA,” said Brian Currie, M.D., M.P.H., co-director of the Block ICTR, vice president for medical research at Montefiore, and professor of clinical medicine and of clinical epidemiology & population health at Einstein. “Our partnership and commitment to scientific research remains robust. Thanks to this multi-year grant, our investigators will continue to prosper in the current difficult fiscal environment.” 

The Block ICTR provides investigators physical sites to conduct clinical research; laboratories and biorepositories where patient samples can be stored and studied; resources for community engagement, biomedical informatics, biostatistics and research design; and clinical trials support. The institute facilitates a range of research, from bench sciences to community health. Research training and career development also are inherent in the institute’s mission, with a wide array of training and career development programs for a multidisciplinary cadre of early-stage investigators.

“We will continue to innovate in education and career development in order to expand the workforce and build pathways to leadership for the next generation of medical researchers,” said Paul Marantz, M.D., M.P.H., co-director of the Block ICTR, associate dean for clinical research education and professor of clinical epidemiology & population health and of clinical medicine at Einstein.  

(The Einstein-Montefiore ICTR CTSA grant numbers are 1UL1TR001073, 1KL2TR001071 and 1TL1TR001072.)