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San Antonio researchers get millions to put discoveries into practice

Multichannel pipette injecting liquid into a microtiter plate
nicolas_/Getty Images
Multichannel pipette injecting liquid into a microtiter plate

A $46 million grant from the National Institutes of Health will help UT Health San Antonio get cutting edge science into communities more quickly.

Dr. Robert Clark, director of the Institute for Integration of Medicine and Science at UT Health San Antonio, said it currently takes an average of 17 years for people to benefit from scientific discoveries.

“We want to make that process faster, more efficient, more reliable so there isn't that that long downtime to be able to get to that objective endpoint of a new treatment and a diagnostic, a new approach to some public health problem,” Clark said.

The $46 million NIH grant from the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences will support translational science programs over the next five to seven years at eight area institutions. The goal is to reduce health disparities among Mexican Americans, active military personnel and veterans, according to Clark.

The Institute for Integration of Medicine and Science coordinates the funding, and partners include The University of Texas at Austin Dell Medical School and College of Pharmacy, Texas Biomedical Research Institute, San Antonio Metropolitan Health District, San Antonio Military Health System, South Texas Veterans Health Care System and University Health.

This is the fourth time UT Health San Antonio has been selected to receive a multi-million dollar NIH Clinical and Translational Science Award since 2008.

"That indicates that San Antonio is highly respected, nationally, in terms of health related research and health care," Clark said, adding that it is a recognition of the city’s strong academic and community programs that are leaders in translating from scientific research to the clinic and to public health.

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