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News Roundup
January 28, 2020
Updates from CLIC  
Metadata Automation DREAM Challenge Launched!

One goal of the Cancer MoonshotSM Initiative is to create a National Cancer Data Ecosystem to collect, share, and interconnect a broad array of large datasets so that researchers, clinicians and patients will be able to contribute and analyze data and facilitate new discoveries. The Metadata Automation DREAM Challenge, which is open for submission February 10 - April 24, 2020, challenges participants to develop tools that will automate metadata annotation on structured data files using NCI common data elements metadata including NCI Thesaurus concepts. 
A webinar about the challenge will be held Thursday, January 30th, 2020 at 9AM (Pacific Standard Time).  If you wish to participate in this webinar, use this link to join at the scheduled time (no registration needed). A video of the webinar and slides will be provided afterward on the Challenge resources site.

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News from around the CTSA Program Consortium
Mayo InSciEd Out Program Teaches Students How to Test the Effects of Vaping on Zebrafish

Lincoln eighth-grader Sydney Schulz says she hears older students say vaping oils are harmless. Lab research she conducted herself says otherwise. She and her peers have been observing the effects of those oils on developing zebrafish.

The students are taking part in Mayo Clinic's Integrated Science Education Outreach — InSciEd Out — program that works with K-12 students.

InSciEd Out was initiated through Mayo's Center for Clinical and Translational Science in 2009 as a collaboration among Mayo Clinic, Winona State University-Rochester and Rochester Public Schools. Since then, it has grown to include additional collaborations in Florida, Illinois, India and Ghana.

Response of Cocaine-Addicted Individuals to Oxytocin is Gender-Specific, Study Shows

A team of addiction researchers at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) report that oxytocin, a hormone produced naturally in the brain, has significant gender differences when used as a treatment for cocaine-addicted individuals with a history of childhood trauma. 

The MUSC team was led by Jane E. Joseph, Ph.D. (pictured below), a professor in the Department of Neuroscience, and Kathleen T. Brady, M.D., Ph.D., a professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, director of the South Carolina Clinical & Translational Research (SCTR) Institute and MUSC vice president for research. The study used the services of SCTR's Nexus Research Center.

ICYMI: News from the Science & Research World
NPR: FDA Approves Drugs Faster Than Ever But Relies On Weaker Evidence, Researchers Find

The Food and Drug Administration has gotten faster at approving new prescription drugs over the past four decades, but the evidence it relies on to make those decisions is getting weaker, according to new research.

The new study, published earlier this month in the Journal of the American Medical Association, finds that almost half of recent new drug approvals were based on only one pivotal clinical trial instead of the two or more that used to be the norm. Former FDA Principal Deputy Commissioner Joshua Sharfstein, M.D., says the FDA has succeeded in approving more drugs, but he also says that more changes are needed to make sure the medicines are worthwhile for patients.

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If you have a story, opportunity, project or event that you'd like included in the News Roundup, please contact CLIC Communications:

The University of Rochester Center for Leading Innovation and Collaboration (CLIC) is the coordinating center for the Clinical and Translational Science Awards (CTSA) Program, funded by the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Grant U24TR002260.

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