In the mold of the bench-to-bedside paradigm for health implementation science, tobacco regulatory science (TRS) faces a similar challenge of translating the current foundational work first into a formal regulatory science discipline and eventually (but quickly) to policy and regulatory implementation that leads ultimately to the reduction of tobacco-related disease and death. To address this challenge, the National Institutes of Health and the Food and Drug Administration need a mechanism to organize, monitor, assess, react to, and plan current and future research, both as individual projects and as a harmonized, purposive portfolio that follows a developing path for the research, leading to science-based tobacco regulatory actions. The CECTR will be central to this process. Westat is pleased to join with the Schroeder Institute for Tobacco Research and Policy Studies of the American Legacy Foundation (Schroeder-Legacy) to create a CECTR based on the fundamental premise that fulfilling this mission requires an integration of deep scientific and technical expertise and knowledge in the nascent field of TRS with outstanding operational capabilities in managing large coordinating centers and other complex support projects. Led by co-PD/PIs Jeanne Rosenthal, MPH (Westat), and David Abrams, PhD (Schroeder-Legacy), and staffed by a cadre of senior tobacco scientists and highly experienced evaluators, training developers, methodologists, epidemiologists, analysts, and statisticians, our approach provides scientific leadership and research technical expertise within a highly supportive and efficient infrastructure. The Westat team will focus on achieving the following specific aims: (1) accelerate knowledge sharing and innovation by facilitating collaboration and communication;(2) increase the timely availability of TRS conceptual models, common measures and other tools for policy relevant research;(3) enhance the capacity of the research community to conduct more rapid and impactful TRS by coordinating cross-disciplinary training of CTP-funded scientists and facilitating data sharing, analysis, and synthesis;and (4) enhance the quality and innovativeness of TRS and expand the research capacity to produce results that inform policy and practice through a rigorous evaluation process.
CECTR, serving as a hub for TRS research and training, is a critical mechanism for creating and sustaining the momentum necessary to move TRS from fledgling to mature status. A direct result of CECTR activities includes sustained and significant improvements in TRS methods, standards and applications;development of a shared conceptual trans disciplinary framework;and training of the next generation of TRS scientists. OVERALL CENTER