April 28, 2020

TRI Director Laura James, M.D., Named to National Science Board

Laura James, M.D., director of the UAMS Translational Research Institute, has been elected to the national Association for Clinical and Translational Science (ACTS) Board of Directors.

She joins 13 other directors at large from Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) Program institutions across the United States.

James has been director of the institute since 2014 and is UAMS associate vice chancellor for Clinical and Translational Research. She has a 25-year history of translational research in clinical pharmacology and toxicology at UAMS and Arkansas Children’s Hospital. As a clinician-scientist and founder of the startup company Acetaminophen Toxicity Diagnostics LLC, she is leading development of a rapid diagnostic test for acetaminophen liver injury. In 2014 she was named inaugural fellow of the Arkansas Research Alliance (ARA).

The role of the ACTS board is to govern, establish policy and make strategic decisions about the future of the organization. ACTS supports research that continually improves team science, integrating multiple disciplines across the translational science spectrum. It is also the academic home for translational research education and career development, and is an advocate for translational science.

Translational research is the process of taking findings and discoveries (new medicines, health interventions, etc.) and “translating” or applying them to everyday practices that improve health.

The CTSA Program is administered by the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) at the National Institutes of Health. TRI received a five-year, $24.2 million CTSA, grant UL1 TR003107 in July 2019 and is one of more than 60 CTSA-supported institutions nationally.