ICTS holds 4th annual Symposium; Announces CTSA funding renewal

The Washington University Institute of Clinical and Translational Sciences (ICTS) hosted their 4th annual Symposium and Poster Display on Friday, May 13, 2022. The theme “Making an Impact, Shaping the Future” focused on strategies to address equity and diversity challenges experienced by institutions across the national Clinical and Translational Science Awards (CTSA) network. The hybrid event offered opportunities to attend virtually or in-person.

ICTS Director William Powderly, MD (right) introduces Mario Castro, MD, MPH, CTSA PI, University of Kansas Medical Center, during the keynote panel presentation.

The event kicked off with a welcome from ICTS Director William Powderly, MD followed by remarks by Dean David Perlmutter, MD. Both Powderly and Perlmutter reflected on the ICTS’ achievements during the past 15 years and mentioned future initiatives as the ICTS embarks on its fourth cycle of consecutive funding from the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) of the National Institutes of Health. On May 12th, Washington University School of Medicine announced that they had received a $61 million grant from NCATS to support the infrastructure for developing and carrying out biomedical research studies. The funding supports the ICTS, which was established in 2007. 

Following the welcoming remarks was a keynote panel comprised of three CTSA principal investigators, including L. Ebony Boulware, MD, MPH, CTSA PI Duke University; Mario Castro, MD, MPH, CTSA PI University of Kansas Medical Center and Rebecca D. Jackson, MD, CTSA PI The Ohio State University. Each investigator shared their experience and strategies addressing equity and diversity challenges at their respective institutions.

Doug Lindsay, rare disease advocate, personal medical consultant, and ICTS Community Advisory Board Co-Chair, delivers his presentation, “Subject or Subject Matter Expert? Just Ask Them”.

Other highlights included a presentation by Doug Lindsay, a rare disease advocate, personal medical consultant, and ICTS Community Advisory Board Co-Chair, discussing how to co-design both studies and dissemination strategies with patients to boost enrollment and impact. The event concluded with a clinical trials panel examining challenges and solutions in the context of community engagement, informatics, recruitment, workforce diversity, and evaluation moderated by ICTS Associate Director, Christina Gurnett, MD, PhD and featuring Thomas Kannampallil, PhD; Doug Lindsay; Jessica Mozersky, PhD; Yi Zhang, RN, JD.

The clinical trials panel on “Increasing Diverse Representation in Clinical Trials”.

Prior to the symposium, an electronic poster display featuring ICTS-supported projects was featured on the the ICTS website. The ICTS community was invited to view and vote for up to three of their favorite posters prior to the event. A total of 47 posters were submitted and reviewed by 22 ICTS faculty from Washington University in St. Louis, University of Missouri – Columbia, and Saint Louis University. Read more about the winning posters here.

The ICTS extends a sincere thank you to all the speakers, attendees, faculty and staff who helped to make the Symposium a success. Special thanks to Symposium co-sponsors including: Institute for Public Health at Washington University, the Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Center (WUSM), and Siteman Cancer Center.