The goal of the Center for Collaborative Research in Minority Health and Health Disparities (CCRMHD) at the University of Puerto Rico Medical Sciences Campus (UPR-MSC) for the next five years is to contribute to the national infrastructure and the capacity for research in the health sciences by supporting translational studies in health disparities affecting the Puerto Rican population. Toward this end, the CCRMHD proposes the following specific aims: (1) target specific minority health and health disparities areas for development and provide initial funding for research activities to support them; (2) promote the professional development of new faculty and early-stage investigators working on these areas (3) develop an efficient and agile research structure to provide services that will facilitate the conduct of collaborative research in minority health and health disparities and develop long-lasting partnerships with commumity- based organizations. We will leverage current research infrastructure and relationships with community- based organizations and stimulate new collaborations utilizing the resources provided by the RCMI Network (RTRN) and other NIH-supported research and mentoring networks such as the CTSA and NRMN. The CCRMHD will integrate its five components into a cohesive structure to address the proposed specific aims and ensure that research activities focus on minority health and health disparities. The Administrative Core, directed by the PI, will oversee and support all core activities and provide direction at a program level. Special attention will be given to the development of career enhancement activities that will promote minority health and health disparities research. With the assistant of an external evaluator progress of the cores toward achieving goals and outcomes will be monitored and evaluated. Preservation of on-going collaborations and partnerships as well as the development of new ones will also be a priority.The Research Infrastructure Core will provide specialized research services in the areas of informatics, genomics, proteomics, tropical and emerging infectious diseases, and neurogenomics- bioimaging to the research projects supported by the CCRMHD as well as other research projects addressing minority health and health disparities. The Investigator Development Core, by supporting pilot projects, will serve as a focal point for promoting professional development of new faculty and early- stage investigators working on diseases that disproportionately affect the Puerto Rican population. The Community Engagement Core, will target the development of long-term partnerships with commumity organizations and facilitate the dissemination of CCRMHD services and research achievements. Finally, we will support three translational Research Projects conducted covering the areas of basic biomedical, behavioral and clinical research. All research projects address mechanisms and/or develop and evaluate interventions to reduce health disparities relevant to the Puerto Rican population.
The proposed Centre for Collaborative Research in Minority Health and Health Disparities (CCRMHD) at the University of Puerto Rico Medical Sciences Campus builds upon research resources developed under a G12 RCMI grant and an extensive academic/community partnership to address health disparities affecting the Puerto Rican population. Translational research projects in the areas of basic biomedical, behavioral and clinical research, if successful, will provide different and innovative approaches to promote minority health and health disparities research among early career investigators and students, enhance participation of Hispanic patients in genomics studies and provide novel interventions to reduce childhood obesity within and outside Puerto Rico.
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