UF COMJ enters a new era of research, with “big data” as a focus.
Research is the asset that drives improvements in health care. Additionally, research can generate new revenue streams and differentiate our institution from competitors in a crowded market. Therefore, we must capitalize on momentum and advance our research activities at UF Health Jacksonville to accelerate from good to great.
To unify our campus in this effort, leaders will begin messaging more broadly about the exciting initiatives we are undertaking to ensure research advances our vision to be the region’s most valued health care asset.
Based on in-person interviews focused on the “voice of the customer,” we have devised an operating plan that emphasizes:
- Promoting a culture that understands the value of research
- Enhancing our ability to capture and analyze data for research
- Systematically collecting and storing high-yield biospecimens
- Practicing operational efficiency and financial responsibility
- Enhancing internal and external communications
- Leveraging new strategic partnerships
- Expanding our ability to recruit, train, mentor and retain talent
- Tracking research metrics to guide strategy and provide accountability
Our operating plan is designed to build a research ecosystem that provides a range of resources to drive success in a financially responsible way. We will describe in detail this concept of the research ecosystem in future messaging. For now, direct related questions to Alexander Parker, Ph.D., at 904.803.6003 or Tina Bottini at 904.244.9478.
CENTER FOR DATA SOLUTIONS
From our in-person interviews, it was clear we must focus on expanding and enhancing our research analytics capabilities. In response this changing data landscape, we have created the UF Center for Data Solutions, which is designed to:
- Expand existing bandwidth for data collection and biostatistical analysis
- Add advanced analytic expertise to our campus, e.g., machine learning, neural networks, visualization
- Connect analysts with investigators using a customer-service-oriented approach – analysts learn clinical context and travel to investigators for meetings
- Support ideas and studies at all stages to foster a culture of team science
This new center is a resource for all investigators on our campus and is fully aligned with our growing research ecosystem. The center comprises three integrated hubs:
- Advanced analytics
Director Jennifer Fishe, M.D., and program manager Kim Vigal provide overall leadership for the center while Shiva Gautam, Ph.D., oversees the specific activities of the biostatistics hub.
We will provide more details on the center in coming months, including how researchers can use its resources to advance our mission. In the meantime, direct any questions to Parker, Bottini or Fishe at 804.931.7567.
This is an exciting time for our campus. We look forward to partnering with everyone to ensure research is a driving force for positive change in our hospital, practices, academic settings and throughout the community.
FEDERAL AWARD FOR STUDY ON PROSTATE CANCER
Congratulations to K.C. Balaji, M.D., and his research team in urology for having their project recommended for funding by the Department of Defense.
The project, titled “Combinatorial Inhibition of MYC in Prostate Cancer,” will explore a novel way to combine two individual cancer therapies that have never been used together in prostate cancer. This unique “one-two punch” approach underscores the innovation being driven by this team and others on campus.
While prostate cancer deaths have declined steadily for a few decades, this downward trend has unfortunately stalled over the past five years. As such, the innovation being demonstrated by this group will be key as we continue our battle against the disease. We are proud of our colleagues for showing how the College of Medicine – Jacksonville is on the leading edge of highly translational, patient-oriented cancer research.
“ALL OF US” MILESTONE
We are thrilled to be part of the National Institutes of Health “All of Us” program, which seeks to assemble more than 1 million participants, creating the largest research cohort in U.S. history. The effort will support exciting new medical discoveries for decades to come.
The Jacksonville Aging Studies Center, or JAX-ASCENT, reached a big milestone by enrolling more than 100 participants. We remain the only heath care organization in Jacksonville enrolling people in the program.
Contact JAX-ASCENT at 904.244.4690 to learn more about the All of Us or to sign up.