The Irving Institute for Clinical and Translational Science

The Irving Institute for Clinical and Translational Research, funded by a National Institutes of Health Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA), serves as the cornerstone of translational science for the Columbia Precision Medicine Initiative.

Under the leadership of Director Designate Dr. Muredach Reilly, the Irving Institute centralizes all activities in non-cancer biobanking, genome-based clinical phenotyping and “omics”, and clinical trials that apply to human genetics to improve patient care at the Columbia University Medical Center and NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital. The Institute for Genomic Medicine will be a critical partner for genomic analysis in this collaborative and synergistic initiative. 

A major goal of the Irving Institute is to enhance capacity for research and training in precision medicine by initiating and maintaining educational programs, mentorship, and overall support. Programs include the TRANSFORM TL1 Precision Medicine Training Program and the Precision Medicine Pilot Awards.

To learn more about the Irving Institute for Clinical and Translational Research, click here.

Education and Training

The Irving Institute seeks to promote high-quality research, enhance the integration of clinical and translational science, advance the field of precision medicine and deliver them more quickly to the patient community.

Precision Medicine Fellowship - Postdoctoral Research Scientists

The Precision Medicine Fellowship aims to create the next generation of leaders in the development and application of Precision Medicine science and methods to improve public health.  This new research fellowship in precision medicine will train physician-researchers as Postdoctoral Research Scientists to use genomics and complex clinical data to improve clinical care and clinical outcomes by tailoring prevention, screening, and medical interventions based upon individual patient characteristics.  The two-year program will include required didactic lectures in precision medicine as well as coursework in systems biology, genomics, statistics, ethics, and/or medical informatics according to the applicant’s background and future career goals.

To be eligible, applicants must have a PhD, MD, DDS, or comparable doctoral degree from an accredited domestic or foreign institution. Eligible doctoral degrees include, but are not limited to, the following:  DMD, DC, DO, DVM, OD, DPM, ScD, EngD, DrPH, DNSc, DPT, PharmD, ND (Doctor of Naturopathy), DSW, PsyD, as well as a doctoral degree in nursing research. Two years of full-time participation are required.  Applicants with prior research experience and background in genomics or informatics are especially encouraged to apply.

The TRANSFORM TL1 Pre-doctoral Precision Medicine Training Program is intended to provide students already enrolled in doctoral training programs, primarily from the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences, College of Physicians & Surgeons, School of Nursing, or the Mailman School of Public Health, with additional research training to prepare for an academic research career that can contribute in some meaningful way to the field of precision medicine. This two year training opportunity which will run simultaneously with the students’ ongoing doctoral training, allows doctoral students to gain knowledge and skill-sets that may be outside of their primary academic or clinical discipline. The interdisciplinary education gained as a TRANSFORM TL1 Precision Medicine trainee will serve as an invaluable asset in conducting future research and collaborating with scientists and investigators from other clinical and academic fields of knowledge. Participation in this program will not necessitate extending an individual’s doctoral training program. Details are provided at the TL1 Precision Medicine Training Program webpage

Doctoral Students entering their third year or beyond are preferred.

The TRANSFORM TL1 Post-doctoral Precision Medicine Training Program combines didactic training, mentoring, exposure to multidisciplinary research, and ongoing evaluation to prepare young investigators for careers in precision medicine. 

Postdoctoral MD candidates in years 2 or 3 of a clinical fellowships or years 3 or 4 of a procedurally-oriented fellowship are preferred. Postdoctoral PhD candidates who have finished a doctoral degree within the past 2 years are preferred.

Advances in Precision Medicine Seminar Series

The Irving Institute hosts a monthly seminar series featuring leaders in precision medicine from across the nation, open to the Columbia University community. Organized by Drs. Wendy Chung, Ali Gharavi, and Ron Wapner, seminars highlight recent developments in implementation of “precision medicine” concepts in medical practice. Topics that will be addressed include establishment of individualized programs for disease prevention and detection at academic medical centers, improvements in our understanding of the role of genomic factors in the individual response to drugs, progress in adaptive clinical trials exploring predictive algorithms and patient genomic data in oncology, mining of electronic health records to explore genotype and phenotype associations, and others. Seminars began January 19, 2016 and are held on the second Tuesday of the month from 4 to 5 pm.

Precision Medicine Pilot Award

A funding opportunity for research proposals focused on approaches to tailor medical care (prevention, diagnosis, and/or treatment) based on the genomic DNA sequence of  individual patients.tudies may include use of biomarkers, genomic data, aggregated clinical data, and/or patient-reported data to develop personalized medical care. Proposals may also be based on individualizing methods to effectively educate and communicate with patients. 

Applicants must be full-time Columbia University faculty at the rank of Assistant Professor or higher. Studies are expected to include collaborations between investigators from at least two different departments; collaborations between the Morningside and CUMC campuses are especially encouraged.