Goal 3: Advance Translational Research

Next Stage of COPD Discovery

1) Refinement of COPD subphenotypes for therapeutics, diagnostics and mechanistic interrogation. The NIH should encourage a strong focus on a) rigorous, mechanistically-reinforced definitions (chronic bronchitis, emphysema (with and without obstruction), frequent exacerbators, combined pulmonary fibrosis and emphysema) and 2) the development and optimization of animal model systems that replicate the different subphenotypes.

2) Development of new research translational grants that traverse clinical to basic proposals. Basic researchers are financially disadvantaged if they need a recruitment arm and clinical researchers face oppressive reviews if they have basic projects.

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Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Critical Challenge (CC)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC :

If we could develop less costly and time consuming cell and animal models of COPD that reflect meaningful subphenotypes, we would be able to not only probe basic mechanism but also have reliable test platforms for candidate therapies.

There is typically a major obstacle between the acquisition of big data from observational disease cohorts, often broad but superficial, and the translation of these findings to basic discovery efforts. The clinical researchers speak a different language than the basic investigators and traversing this chasm with grant enticements might prove helpful.

Feasibility and challenges of addressing this CQ or CC :

This would require some suspension of the classic mechanistic, hypothesis driven proposals to develop these research tools.

There would need to be some reconstruction of study sections to permit these combined clinical-basic grants. The translational PPG was in keeping with this but should be reinforced with smaller grant programs such as RO1 level grants.

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : lungmatbio1

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Idea No. 694