Translational research

Facing the challenge: from fundeamental research to clinical trials



Emerging technological developments in nano‐ and microsystems engineering have delivered powerful tools for neuroscience research over the last 50 years. However, only few neural implants have been transferred into clinical practice. When researchers investigate a fundamental research question and generate fascinating results, why is it so hard to make a product out of it? Which challenges and hurdles does one have to face? And are the personal skills that one need to be successful in fundamental research the same that are needed in translation of these results into clinical trials?

Prof. Dr. Thomas Stieglitz from the Laboratory for Biomedical Microtechnology, Department of Microsystems Engineering (IMTEK) and Vice-Spokesperson of BrainLinks-BrainTools addressed these questions in a NeuroView article in Neuron and shares his thoughts and experience with the readers. Challenges and opportunities for translational research are discussed with respect to technologies, regulatory affairs, the value of in vitro experiments and preclinical studies as well as academic and entrepreneurial aspects in the career of young and senior researchers.

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