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Director’s Message Fall 2014

Dr. Firestein

I'm very pleased to announce our launch of UCSD Profiles, a powerful online networking tool that connects researchers with other researchers and encourages the formation of collaborations. The Clinical and Translational Research Institute (CTRI) manages UCSD Profiles, and CTRI Translational Research Alliance Director Deborah Spector leads the project, working closely with staff from CTRI, UCSD's Calit2, and UC San Francisco.

Profiles Research Networking Software is an NIH-funded open source research-mining and match-making tool originally developed by Harvard University. UC San Francisco adapted it in partnership with Harvard and has worked with UC San Diego for the past year to launch UCSD Profiles. Users of Profiles can discover networks by seeing others' research connections, including who has co-authored on publications and who has worked on similar research topics. It is searchable on the web and can be viewed by the general public, as well as by the research community. A rich mine of experts, collaborators, and mentors is available by research topic or investigator name, with searches resulting in lists that are ranked according to expertise and connections.

UCSD Profiles presently features faculty, researchers with academic leadership appointments, and non-faculty academic researchers from UC San Diego Health Sciences. Each has an individual profile page with public information uploaded from Blink, the UC San Diego Directory. At a minimum, a page includes a researcher's name, degrees, and basic information, and lists published articles that are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources. Profile owners can edit and enhance their own profiles by adding a research overview, photo, awards, mentoring information, and website links to other sites. Primary campus information and publications are automatically updated weekly.

While our present capabilities allow researchers to easily find experts and other researchers in Health Sciences at UC San Diego, UCSD Profiles opens the door to branching out to other departments on campus. We will continue to work with UC San Francisco to expand this data and social networking tool at UCSD.

At CTRI, we are dedicated to providing collaboration opportunities for researchers in an effort to accelerate the discovery of scientific breakthroughs leading to new therapies. UCSD Profiles fosters inter-disciplinary research partnerships, and we are delighted to bring this innovative tool to the UC San Diego community.

Gary S. Firestein, MD, Director of CTRI
Professor of Medicine Dean and Associate Vice Chancellor of Translational Medicine
Phone: (858) 822-3824