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TRWG Definition of Translational Research

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Communication and Outreach

The Translational Research Working Group (TRWG) was established in the summer of 2005 to conduct a discussion with the broader cancer research community and develop recommendations about how the National Cancer Institute (NCI) can best organize its investment to further "translational research."

Over the span of two years, the TRWG reviewed NCI's current intramural and extramural translational research portfolio (within the scope of the TRWG mission), facilitated broad community input, invited public comment, and recommended ways to improve and integrate efforts. The ultimate goal was to accelerate progress toward improving the health of the nation and cancer patient outcomes.

The TRWG has accomplished its mission using the following phases:

  • Phase 1: The TRWG evaluated the current portfolio of NCI-funded translational activities and invited input from the broad cancer community and the general public about the strengths of that portfolio as well as ways to improve and enhance its focus, integration, and effectiveness.
  • Phase 2: The TRWG devised an optimized translational research model and offered recommendations about how NCI can achieve this future vision for translational research. The TRWG shared these recommendations with the cancer community and again invited public input.
  • Phase 3: The TRWG finalized its model and recommendations, and proposed an implementation strategy. The strategy includes both short-term adjustments intended to better harmonize existing programs, as well as long-term initiatives that may transcend existing programs.

In June 2007, the National Cancer Advisory Board accepted the TRWG Report. As such, the NCI is now beginning efforts to put the TRWG recommendations into practice. TRWG co-chair, Dr. Lynn M. Matrisian, has recently joined the NCI Coordinating Center for Clinical Trials office on a part-time basis to spearhead implementation of the TRWG recommendations.

NCI's commitment to translational research

NCI is committed to speeding the development of new diagnostic tests, cancer treatments, and other interventions that benefit people with cancer and people at risk for cancer. Such development relies on strong translational research collaborations between basic and clinical scientists to generate novel approaches.

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