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Cardiology Research and Practice
Volume 2012, Article ID 246710, 5 pages
Review Article

The Continuing Challenges of Translational Research: Clinician-Scientists’ Perspective

1Leeds Vascular Institute, Leeds General Infirmary, Leeds LS1 3EX, UK
2Division of Surgery and Interventional Science, University College London, Royal Free Campus, London NW3 2QG, UK

Received 5 July 2012; Accepted 25 July 2012

Academic Editor: Sidney G. Shaw

Copyright © 2012 Shervanthi Homer-Vanniasinkam and Janice Tsui. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Over the last twenty years, revolutionary advances in biomedicine including gene therapy, stem cell research, proteomics, genomics and nanotechnology have highlighted the progressive need to restructure traditional approaches to basic and clinical research in order to facilitate the rapid, efficient integration and translation of these new technologies into novel effective therapeutics. Over the past ten years, funding bodies in the USA and UK such as the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Medical Research Council (MRC) have been driving translational research by defining and tackling the hurdles but more still remains to be achieved. This article discusses the ongoing challenges translational researchers face and outlines recent initiatives to tackle these including the new changes to translational funding schemes proposed by the NIH and the MRC and the launch of the “European Advanced Translational Research InfraStructure in Medicine” (EATRIS). It is anticipated that initiatives such as these will not only strengthen translational biomedical research programmes already initiated but should lead to rapid benefits to patients and society.