We seek sponsorship from the NIH to support the establishment of an innovative and successful training hub in neurotechnology at UCLA ? the UCLA Training in Neurotechnology Translation (TNT) - integrating multidisciplinary expertise in basic, translational, and clinical neurosciences and engineering. The increasing burden of neurologic disease is projected to be significant; it is anticipated that neurotechnology, like prosthetics, imaging, and other devices, will be integral to meeting this unmet need. The overall mission of TNT is to train a new generation of neuroscientists and engineers who will be leaders in the field of translational neurotechnology who have expertise in the longitudinal process of translating technology from bench-to-bedside in clinical neurosciences. The training program builds on the belief that successful translational neuroscientists of the future will require not only mastery of science, but will require specific knowledge and experience in fundamental issues related to translation, including experimental and trial design, statistics, regulatory processes and hurdles, and the business aspects of neurotechnology translation. The specific objectives for TNT include: (1) Understanding the spectrum of translational neurotechnology research (2) Becoming experts in the longitudinal process of clinical translation (3) Learning how to define clinical needs and practicalities for translational research (4) Training in scientific rigor (5) Training in regulatory pathways and business of science, including communication and (6) Exposure and understanding of industry perspectives and regulatory and business hurdles in translational neurotechnology. The program will integrate exposure across disciplines, with key activities in training including: (1) Mentored research in the field of neurotechnology (2) Clinical immersion experience (3) Dual mentorship by a scientist and clinician (4) TNT Seminar Series (5) Core coursework in scientific rigor and the responsible conduct of research (6) Participation in campus-based innovation and/or translational activity and (7) Submission of an individual funding application. At the core of the training program is a multidisciplinary faculty from 13 departments across three schools at UCLA with a strong record of funding, publication, and training success. The training experience is complemented by commitment by multiple industry partners to participate in and provide educational opportunities for trainees. TNT will train 3 predoctoral and 3 postdoctoral trainees (2-year appointment). TNT is both complementary to, and participatory in, existing programs in neurosciences, engineering, innovation, and translation already well established at UCLA.

Public Health Relevance

The rapid development and clinical translation of neurotechnology, such as brain stimulators and devices to map and monitor the brain, has revolutionized the care of neuropsychiatric diseases. As the burden of neurological diseases on society increases at an exponential rate, society must be prepared and train future leaders who have multidisciplinary training and are prepared to develop, innovate, and translate basic neuroscientific findings into real-world neurotechnology solutions. The UCLA program, Training in Neurotechnology Translation, will serve as a training hub that will demand that trainees bridge the gap between technology and experimental science, taking advantage and building upon local expertise in relevant fields, close collaboration and interaction with industry partners, and the culture of innovation and translation that permeates UCLA.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZNS1)
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Korn, Stephen J
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University of California Los Angeles
Schools of Medicine
Los Angeles
United States
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