The West Virginia Clinical and Translational Science Institute (WVCTSI) will establish a new key component area (Technology and Resources for Core Laboratories) that supports research infrastructure critical for translating basic research to practices that improve the health of West Virginians. Importantly, the Technology Core leverages previous IDeA investment in West Virginia, while bringing exciting innovation to support clinical and translational (C/T) investigators' efforts to solve meaningful problems. The Core is unique in its technology- based focus, but absolutely connected to the overarching aims of the WVCTSI that coalesce on improving health. Resources described in this Core are essential in providing infrastructure to engage and train C/T scientists about the value and availability of primary samples that define the gold standard in biologically-relevant disease models. In addition, we will develop contemporary approaches to data management of ?omics? based information that inform our understanding of disease processes. Further, expanding models to include pre- clinical imaging will elevate C/T investigations to a level not previously attainable. Each focused effort will involve training, mentoring, and technical support that result in hands-on facilitation of investigations while maintaining strict quality control, and administrative and scientific oversight. Critically, this technology-grounded core will provide products and resources that are clinically applicable and translatable.
The specific aims that will achieve our goals are to: 1) establish a statewide biospecimen repository that collects patient and study participant samples in WVCTSI priority health areas (addiction and resultant emerging epidemics (e.g., hepatitis C), cancer, cardiovascular disease, and chronic lung disease), 2) establish a statewide West Virginia University (WVU) - Marshall University (MU) genomics shared research facility for the efficient generation of genomic and related data for C/T studies that address WVCTSI priority health areas, 3) establish a statewide WVU-MU shared Bioinformatics and Data Management (BDM) Facility for C/T studies that address WVCTSI priority health areas, and 4) establish state-of-the-art imaging in support of biologically relevant modeling of disease. Focus across the Core is provided by tethering all activities to WVCTSI priority health areas to avoid diffusion of investment and energy, and maximize investment to achieve significant and measurable outcomes. Relevance is obtained by absolute diligence in the design and focus of each aim connecting to a clinical application. In combination, this results in impact on our understanding of specific diseases of interest, and the potential to impact positively on the health of West Virginians.
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