Sustaining the Clinical and Translational Research Workforce: Training and Empowering the Next Generation of Investigators

Helen L. Yin, Janice Gabrilove, Rebecca Jackson, Carol Sweeney, Alecia M. Fair, Robert Toto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

26 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

There is mounting concern that clinician-scientists are a vanishing species and that the pipeline for clinical and translational research (CTR) investigators is in jeopardy. For the majority of current junior CTR investigators, the career path involves first obtaining a National Institutes of Health (NIH)-funded K-type career development award, particularly K08 and K23, and subsequently an NIH R01. This transition, popularly referred to as K2R, is a major hurdle with a low success rate and gaps in funding. In this Perspective, the authors identify factors that facilitate K2R transition and important aspects of increasing and sustaining the pipeline of CTR investigators. They also highlight significant differences in success rates of women and those underrepresented in biomedical research. Early career exposure to research methodology, protected time, multidisciplinary mentoring, and institutional "culture shift" are important for fostering and rewarding team science. Mentoring is the single most important contributor to K2R success, and emerging evidence suggests that formal mentor training and team mentoring are effective. Leadership training can empower junior investigators to thrive as independent CTR investigators. Future research should focus on delineating the difference between essential and supplemental factors to achieve this transition, and mentoring methods that foster success, including those that promote K2R transition of women and those underrepresented in biomedical research. The Clinical and Translational Science Awards National Consortium is well positioned to test existing models aimed at shortening the time frame, increasing the rate of K2R transition, and identifying strategies that improve success.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)861-865
Number of pages5
JournalAcademic Medicine
Volume90
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 4 2015

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Translational Medical Research
Research Personnel
mentoring
National Institutes of Health (U.S.)
Biomedical Research
career
Mentors
Foster Home Care
Research Design
science
health
Mentoring
funding
leadership
methodology
evidence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Education

Cite this

Sustaining the Clinical and Translational Research Workforce : Training and Empowering the Next Generation of Investigators. / Yin, Helen L.; Gabrilove, Janice; Jackson, Rebecca; Sweeney, Carol; Fair, Alecia M.; Toto, Robert.

In: Academic Medicine, Vol. 90, No. 7, 04.07.2015, p. 861-865.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Yin, Helen L. ; Gabrilove, Janice ; Jackson, Rebecca ; Sweeney, Carol ; Fair, Alecia M. ; Toto, Robert. / Sustaining the Clinical and Translational Research Workforce : Training and Empowering the Next Generation of Investigators. In: Academic Medicine. 2015 ; Vol. 90, No. 7. pp. 861-865.
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