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Office for Translational Research

 

The OTR team (front row, from left): Dr Alex Samoshkin, Ms Ewa Czekaj, Dr Anita Marguerie de Rotrou; (back row from left) Dr Nicola White, Ms Zoe McIntyre and Dr Estelle Bernard-Fichet

 

The Office for Translational Research (OTR) supports researchers from the Cambridge University Health Partners (CUHP) - University of Cambridge, Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Papworth Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and Cambridge and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust - in their efforts to translate their findings from biological, biomedical or clinical research into practical health benefits for patients, including new therapeutics, devices, diagnostics or other medical interventions.

The OTR provides practical support in three major areas:

The OTR works closely with the network of knowledge-transfer professionals across the University and Cambridge Enterprise to ensure there is seamless support across scientific disciplines. We receive core funding from the NIHR Cambridge Biomedical Research Centre and the University of Cambridge’s HEFCE Higher Education Innovation funding (HEIF). 

We connect researchers to the appropriate internal and external infrastructure resources and expertise (e.g. Research Operations Office, Cambridge Enterprise, Research Governance, Clinicians, Clinical Trials Unit, Clinical Research Facility, CRO, experts in residence, PPI groups, etc.).

 

Translating Research

Translational research is “the process of applying ideas, insights, and discoveries generated through basic scientific inquiry to the treatment or prevention of human disease”. The philosophy of “bench to bedside” underpins the concept of translational medicine, i.e. from basic research to patient care.

In the context of the University, the OTR addresses the first gap of “…translating ideas from basic and clinical research into the development of new products and approaches to treatment of disease and illness” rather than the second gap of “…implementing those new products and approaches into clinical practice”.

Translational research requires intricate interactions between various players. We connect researchers to the appropriate internal and external infrastructure resources and expertise (e.g. Research Operations Office, Cambridge Enterprise, Research Governance, Clinical Trials Unit, Clinical Research Facility, CRO, experts in residence, etc.)

The OTR supports researchers in securing translational funding, whether institutional (Cambridge MRC Confidence in Concept), public (charities, MRC DPFS, NIHR i4i, InnovateUK) or industrial.

 

Industrial Partnership

The OTR develops, manages, co-ordinates and monitors industrial collaborative research partnerships, whether inwards or outwards. We create opportunities for scientific discussions between partners to identify collaborative projects via workshops, symposia and 1:1s. We also provide joint industry training opportunities for research via PhD and Experimental Medicine training programmes.

 

Project Management

In certain cases, a project manager is required by the funder of a translational research project. We assist with any issues and challenges arising from the delivery of the project, using our expertise and experience to build a bridge connecting academics’ work to industry stakeholders’ requirements and expectations. Find out about the process here.