John H. Krystal, MD, Robert L. McNeil Jr. Professor of Translational Research, chair and professor of psychiatry, and professor of neuroscience; and Marcella Nunez-Smith, MD, MHS, associate professor of medicine (general medicine) and of epidemiology (chronic diseases), have been chosen for awards by the Association for Clinical and Translational Science (ACTS).
At a ceremony in Washington, D.C., Krystal is receiving the Edward H. Ahrens Jr. Award for Outstanding Achievement in Patient-Oriented Research, which recognizes achievement in bench-to-bedside translational research and emphasizes transformational scientific achievement. Krystal is a leading expert in the areas of alcoholism, post-traumatic stress disorder, schizophrenia, and depression. His work links psychopharmacology, neuroimaging, molecular genetics, and computational neuroscience to study the neurobiology and treatment of these disorders. He is best known for leading the discovery of the rapid antidepressant effects of ketamine in depressed patients.
Nunez-Smith is accepting a Team Science Award on behalf of the Eastern Caribbean Health Outcomes Research Network (ECHORN). This award was established by ACTS to acknowledge and catalyze the growing importance of interdisciplinary teams to the translation of research discoveries into clinical applications and eventually widespread clinical practice. ECHORN, a first-of-its-kind collaborative research and implementation network in the region, has substantially strengthened regional capacity for high-quality research and has developed novel pathways for implementation through health policy and community partnership. The team includes five primary academic institutions and more than 70 health researchers, research staff, and stakeholders/community leaders, representing 35 organizations in the U.S. and Eastern Caribbean. By translating research discoveries into real world applications, including clinical practice and health policy, the group is helping to address disease disparities for millions of adults across the Eastern Caribbean region, New York, and New Jersey with non-communicable diseases including cancer, diabetes, and heart disease. Combining non-communicable disease surveillance, research, intervention, and policy change, along with the principles of community participation, the ECHORN team is making an ongoing positive impact throughout the region.
ACTS, which is based in Washington, describes the purpose of its work as research, education, advocacy, and mentoring.