Human and Translational Studies Core

The overall goals of the UCLA: DDRCC-SigCo Human and Translational Studies (HTS) Core are to provide leadership, training, and an infrastructure to enhance clinical and translational research in digestive diseases. This will be implemented by providing specific services to UCLA: DDRCC-SigCo members, their trainees, and Pilot and Feasibility awardees. The Specific Aims of the HTS Core are 1) Assist and instruct Center investigators in cognitive, technical, and procedural aspects of human GI research, including translational, pilot and feasibility, cohort, randomized controlled studies (RCTs), cooperative or multicenter trials, and database studies. 2) Facilitate access to fully equipped and networked GI endoscopy and motility medical procedure units (MPU’s) at both UCLA and VAGLAHS for clinical, physiologic, and translational research studies, in collaboration with core investigators and clinical coordinators. Service to implement this Aim will include routine and specialized endoscopy for diagnosis and treatment of GI diseases or disorders; collection of human bio-specimens; and assisting in interpretation of findings. 3) Provide access and instruct other investigators about large HIPAA compliant databases, data via informatics, and patient registries for study of selected GI diseases, and/or banks of de-identified human bio-samples (e.g. GI biopsies of tissues, cyst fluid, sera, feces or other human samples) or special images (e.g. functional neuroimaging of the brain in GI disorders). Selected GI diseases, which are aligned with the disease foci of the UCLA: DDRCC-SigCo, include obesity, pancreatic and hepatocellular pre-cancerous conditions, colon polyps, NASH, GI mucosal inflammatory diseases - AIDS and IBD, GI hemorrhage, and functional GI diseases and corresponding normal controls. 4) Provide service, expertise and facility to perform gut microbiome studies through technologies offered by a newly incorporated Microbiome Sub-Core. The services will include access to expertise for experimental planning and sample collection and low-cost per-sample data analysis that minimize the investment required to incorporate the gut microbiome into the research programs of Center members.


Contact Information:

Dennis Jensen, MD                        
Human and Translational Studies Core Director

Joseph Pisegna, MD
Human and Translational Studies Core Co-Director

Kwanmanus (Nok) Suvanamas
Human and Translational Studies Core Administrator