NIH DESIGNATES UIC AS GENERAL CLINICAL RESEARCH CENTER
A $9.5 million grant from the National Institutes of Health establishes the University of Illinois at Chicago Medical Center as a designated General Clinical Research Center, one of only three in the state and 77 in the country.
The grant will fund core facilities and services for UIC researchers engaged in clinical research. This support includes the services of specialized research nurses, research dieticians and biostatisticians as well as computer support for data management and analysis and laboratory services for both inpatient and outpatient research.
The designation recognizes UIC as a premier center for human subject research, according to Dr. Gerald Moss, dean of the UIC College of Medicine.
"Designation as a General Clinical Research Center is a seal of approval from the NIH that underscores the number and importance of the clinical research projects at a center, as well as the institution's support for the highest ethical research standards," Moss said.
According to Dr. Arthur Schneider, professor and chief of endocrinology and metabolism and program director of the GCRC, training physicians and medical students in the safe and ethical conduct of clinical research is an important part of the center's mission and a strength that the NIH recognized. The award notification from the NIH cites UIC for having a "strong training environment [with] a well-defined program to integrate medical students, residents, and postdoctoral fellows in clinical investigation on the GCRC unit."
The letter also lauds UIC for its "strong commitment to the inclusion of underrepresented minorities in clinical research."
Currently housed on the seventh floor of the UIC Hospital, the clinical research center will move into renovated space on the fifth floor that includes inpatient beds, exam rooms, infusion and phlebotomy rooms, a metabolic kitchen, laboratory space for biological sample processing and educational space. The NIH grant will fund $500,000 of the $1.5 million construction costs, with the remainder being funded by the university.
The General Clinical Research Center includes studies being carried out in UIC's Psychiatric Clinical Research Center.
Among the College of Medicine's clinical research projects that will be performed in the GCRC are ongoing projects in psychiatry, endocrinology, cardiology, liver disease and pediatrics. Investigators from the UIC College of Nursing, College of Pharmacy and School of Public Health also use the center. All UIC researchers with projects that involve human subjects are eligible to use the services and facilities of the GCRC.
The UIC College of Medicine is the nation's largest medical school. One out of six Illinois doctors is a graduate of the college, as are 70 percent of the minority physicians practicing in Chicago. The college produces more medical school faculty than all but five schools in the country.
Illinois' only other NIH-designated General Clinical Research Centers are at the University of Chicago and Northwestern University.
For more information about the UIC General Clinical Research Center, visit www.uic.edu/labs/crc/crc.html
For more information about NIH General Clinical Research Centers, visit www.ncrr.nih.gov/clinical/crgcrc.htm
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