Developing the next generation of translational scientists is a priority area for NCATS. The NCATS Division of Preclinical Innovation (DPI) provides a variety of training opportunities for undergraduate, graduate and postdoctoral level trainees. DPI is our intramural research program, with research groups located in Rockville, Maryland — a few miles from the main NIH campus in Bethesda, Maryland.
DPI scientists develop system approaches that improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the translation process. Examples include advancing new technologies to make preclinical research more predictive and efficient or de-risking potential drug targets or research projects to make them more attractive for commercial investment. More than 200 scientists from a variety of disciplines are responsible for advancing the diverse research portfolio of DPI. In addition to conducting cutting-edge laboratory research, DPI scientists collaborate with more than 250 research organizations worldwide.
Collectively, these individuals participate in a team science environment in which each project brings together expertise in:
- Biology (biological and disease assay development)
- Automation and engineering (high-throughput screening robotics)
- Informatics and data analysis
- Medicinal and analytical chemistry
The image below illustrates a great strength of the DPI training program: interdisciplinary interactions.
On the left, the image shows that DPI research teams are organized around —
- Early Translational Branch (formerly NCATS Chemical Genomics Center), which includes 3D Tissue Biofabrication
- Therapeutic Development Branch
- Chemical Genomics Branch, which includes Assay Development and Screening Technologies, Chemistry Technologies, Functional Genomics Laboratory, Stem Cell Translation Laboratory, and Toxicology in the 21st Century
- Core Facilities, including Informatics, Analytical Chemistry and Research Services
Many of these research teams use similar technologies, skills and expertise, shown on the right, to complete their projects, resulting in substantial collaboration among disciplines as depicted by the overlapping ribbons. The complementarity of expertise in DPI creates an enriching environment in which fellows learn multiple skills from domain experts and gain additional scientific and career mentorship.
Learn more about NCATS’ onsite research groups:
- Biomedical Data Translator
- Bridging Interventional Development Gaps (BrIDGs)
- Chemistry Technology
- Early Translation Branch
- Functional Genomics Lab
- Therapeutics for Rare and Neglected Diseases (TRND)
- Toxicology in the 21st Century (Tox21)
- DPI Staff Profiles