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News Roundup
June 2, 2020
Updates from CLIC  
Insights to Inspire 2020
The first blog in the 2020 Insights to Inspire series is now available!
The Insights to Inspire (I2I) series highlights the strategies hubs have used to improve on their Common Metrics. This year's series of blogs focuses on the Careers in Clinical and Translational Research metric. The first blog, Making a Commitment to Diversity & Inclusion, features the tangible initiatives hubs implemented to expand their diversity and inclusion activities. Click below to read the first blog, or check out last year's series of blogs!
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News from around the CTSA Program Consortium
Mayo Clinic Researchers, Minority Communities partner to fight COVID-19 disparities
As the COVID-19 pandemic takes more lives each day across the U.S., public health officials report that racial and ethnic minorities are disproportionately impacted. In a paper published as an accepted pre-proof article May 15, 2020, in the Journal of Clinical and Translational Science, researchers at Mayo Clinic detail how a community-engaged intervention tackled critical health communication problems within vulnerable minority communities. Community leaders collaborated with medical experts to serve as trusted conduits of information to their communities. The shared goal was to help people of diverse backgrounds understand what they need to know about COVID-19 prevention and testing, how to seek care, and how to access community resources.

The health disparities faced by racial and ethnic minorities are driven by social determinants of health, such as socioeconomic position, immigration status, and limited English language proficiency as well as other factors, Mark Wieland, M.D., a community internal medicine physician at Mayo Clinic and the first author on the study says. To find solutions to these complex problems, it's crucial for academic researchers and community stakeholders to work together as equal partners and to leverage existing partnerships, says Irene Sia, M.D., an infectious disease physician at Mayo Clinic, and the study's senior author.
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Patient in VCU Wright Center COVID-19 Trial Shares Her Story for Clinical Trials Day
Kathy White enrolled in the sarilumab trial at VCU, one of several active clinical trials for COVID-19 patients. Joining a clinical trial, she said, gave her purpose. “I just felt like, that's the least I could do to contribute to cleaning up this mess.” “We’re so grateful to patients like Kathy for joining in these trials,” said Antonio Abbate, M.D., Ph.D, a co-investigator on the sarilumab trial and an associate director at the C. Kenneth and Dianne Wright Center for Clinical and Translational Research. “The only way to learn more about this disease — and to save lives — is research and trials. The data we can contribute with the help of volunteers like Kathy are invaluable.”
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ICYMI: News from the Science & Research World
A Secret Experiment Revealed: In a medical first, doctors treat Parkinson's with a novel brain cell transplant

In late 2018, news reports said surgeons in Japan had, that October, performed an experimental procedure that had been on neurologists’ wish list for more than a decade: transplanting into the brain of a Parkinson’s patient replacement cells created from the patient’s own skin cells using a Nobel-winning protocol. It was, claimed the reports, a first. It wasn’t.

Details of this pioneering therapy will be revealed for the first time on Wednesday in a medical journal. But for nearly two years, STAT has been chronicling how it happened. This is the story, based on interviews with the scientists, the doctors, and the patient himself.

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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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