The MIT Catalyst Clinical Research Center is an NIH-funded research facility on campus that provides an infrastructure for interested scientists to perform biomedical research involving human subjects.
Its mission is to support the translation of basic science discoveries into clinical (human) research that may improve the lives of patients and their families. Its existence allows students at all levels to gain experience with human subjects and human disease. Research projects in progress are in the areas of psychiatry, neurology, endocrinology, human nutrition and metabolism, and biomechanical engineering. Disorders under study include autism, dyslexia, ADHD, depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety, social anxiety disorder, and schizophrenia. Most projects involve collaboration between physicians and clinical research scientists, and often involve local hospitals.
The facilities of the center are open to all departments in the Institute, and its principal investigators are faculty members and research scientists from many different departments. The center has state-of-the-art instruments and supports processing of samples. The specialty of clinical research nursing, whose focus is the care of the research participant, provides expertise in the operationalization of research protocols. This practice may include study design consultation, study implementation, data acquisition and processing, safety monitoring, data management, and subject education.
Research opportunities are available for undergraduate and graduate students contemplating careers in the medical sciences. The Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP) allows undergraduate students the opportunity to participate in the research process at the Clinical Research Center—either for credit, pay, or on a volunteer basis.
For further information, contact the program codirectors, Drs. John Gabrieli and Ravi Thadhani, or the administrative director, Lee Mavros Rushton, Room E25-201B, 617-324-5493.