Kimmelman puts clinical translation in spotlight

Jonathan Kimmelman explores methods on how to bring research out of the lab and put it to work toward improved human health as part of the Rotman Speaker Series, sponsored by Western’s Rotman Institute of Philosophy. The McGill University professor will deliver his lecture, Anatomy of Clinical Translation: Ethics, Epistemology and Policy, at 3:30 p.m. Friday, March 21 in Medical Science Building (MSB) 148.

Kimmelman will review the negative views that stem from the ‘pipeline model’ of clinical translation in comparison to the alternative ‘dynamic learning model’ through the use of the cancer drug sunitinib.

Kimmelman, an associate professor in the Biomedical Ethics Unit / Social Studies of Medicine, has cross appointments in Experimental Medicine, Epidemiology, Biostatistics/Occupational Health and Human Genetics. He holds a PhD in Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry from Yale University, and joined McGill in 2005. His research revolves around the ethical, social and policy dimensions of translational research.

The clinical translation process is widely viewed as plagued by inefficiency, error and delay. However, such views – and the research reforms aimed at correcting these deficiencies – draw on a problematic understanding of the nature of clinical translation (the ‘pipeline model’).

In his lecture, Kimmelman will use the recently translated cancer drug, sunitinib, to illustrate an alternative model for clinical translation (the ‘dynamic learning model’).