WCG and Certara Co-sponsor Lasker Leadership Events for International Medical Research Students

May 19, 2015

Support will include the inaugural Lasker Lessons in Leadership series in the US and NIH Global Doctoral Partnerships Annual Research Colloquium in the UK

PRINCETON, NJ – May 19, 2015 – WIRB-Copernicus Group (WCG), the world’s largest provider of regulatory and ethical review services and software to support clinical research, and Certara®, the global biosimulation technology-enabled drug development consultancy, today announced that they are co-sponsoring the inaugural “Lasker Lessons in Leadership,” a series of one-day career-oriented workshops for postgraduate medical research students. This program, which has been developed by the Albert and Mary Lasker Foundation in collaboration with the International Biomedical Research Alliance and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Oxford-Cambridge Scholars Program, will begin on May 19 at the NIH Main Campus in Bethesda, MD.

The NIH Oxford-Cambridge Scholars Program was created in 2001, through a collaboration between the NIH and Oxford and Cambridge Universities, to revolutionize the way in which the most talented biomedical PhD and MD/PhD students in the United States and the European Union are taught. These students receive accelerated training, work on collaborative projects that address critical biomedical research problems, and graduate earlier than in traditional programs with a PhD degree from either Oxford or Cambridge University. They spend an equal amount of time with a mentor in a laboratory at either Oxford or Cambridge University and an NIH Intramural Laboratory.

The Albert and Mary Lasker Foundation was founded in 1942 by Albert and Mary Lasker with the goal of finding cures and new hope to battle disease through biomedical research. The Lasker Awards are among the most respected science prizes in the world. Since 1945, the Awards Program has recognized the contributions of scientists, physicians, and public servants who have made major advances in the understanding, diagnosis, treatment, cure, and prevention of human disease. The Awards were created with the goal of inspiring the public to invest in the biomedical research that saves lives.

Lasker Awards often presage future recognition by the Nobel committee, so they have become popularly known as “America’s Nobels.” Eighty-six Lasker laureates have received the Nobel Prize, including 44 in the last three decades.

The Foundation also promotes scientific education and public policies that enhance biomedical research.

Lasker Foundation President Claire Pomeroy, MD, MBA, said, “The next generation of physicians and scientists is key to ensuring that biomedical research flourishes into the future. In addition to scientific knowledge, these young researchers must have the leadership skills necessary to guide innovation and scientific discovery. The Albert and Mary Lasker Foundation is pleased to partner to create the Lasker Lessons in Leadership program to address this need.”

Keynote speaker at the first Lasker Lessons in Leadership workshop will be Ralph Snyderman, MD, Chancellor Emeritus and James B. Duke Professor of Medicine at Duke University. Dr. Snyderman will give pertinent advice to medical researchers who are just beginning their careers in his presentation entitled: “From Brooklyn to Lab Bench to Board Room: Lessons Learned.” In the afternoon, Dr. Snyderman will discuss “Personalized Medicine: From Theory to Practice.”

During the morning, students will also attend a mentor panel discussion with researchers who are at an earlier stage in their careers. Panelists will include Heidi H. Kong, MD, MHSc, an investigator from the dermatology branch of the National Cancer Institute’s Center for Cancer Research; Dr. Todd Macfarlan, PhD, an investigator specializing in the genomics of differentiation at the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development; and Dr. Joshua Milner, MD, chief of the Genetics and Pathogenesis of Allergy Section at the Laboratory of Allergic Diseases in the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

“At WCG, our mission is to advance medical research whilst safeguarding the subjects who participate in clinical trials. We also promote a culture of excellence and scientific rigor. Therefore, we felt a kinship with the NIH Oxford-Cambridge Scholars Program, which seeks to inspire and accelerate the academic success of gifted students that are embarking on a career in medical research. We are proud to support their work,” commented WCG Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Donald A. Deieso, PhD.

“Science is at the core of Certara’s mission. Our biosimulation technology enables data-driven decisions during all stages of drug development increasing the probability of and shortening the timeline for bringing safer, new drugs to market,” said Certara CEO Edmundo Muniz, MD, PhD. “We are delighted to sponsor the Lasker Lessons in Leadership as another avenue through which we can help to accelerate medical research and bring new therapies to the patients who need them.”

Certara and WCG are also providing financial support for this year’s NIH Global Doctoral Partnerships Annual Research Colloquium, which is part of the NIH Oxford-Cambridge Scholars Program. It is being held at the University of Cambridge from June 21-24. This program will include keynote speeches on immunology and cell biology, together with workshops discussing the relationship between genes and phenotype, how to publish science, trends in big data, and the art of grant writing.

For additional information regarding the Lasker Lessons in Leadership series, please contact Randi Balletta at rb@biomedalliance.org. Dr. Snyderman’s keynote speech will also be available online at https://videocast.nih.gov/FutureEvents.asp.

Additional information about the NIH Oxford-Cambridge Scholars Program can be found at http://oxcam.gpp.nih.gov.

About WIRB-Copernicus Group
WIRB-Copernicus Group (WCG) is the world’s largest provider of regulatory and ethical solutions for clinical research. The company provides Institutional Review Board (IRB) and Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC) reviews, and Human Research Protection (HRP), Good Clinical Practice (GCP) and Biosafety consulting services. Its technology offerings include IRB workflow management solutions (IRBNet), clinical trial management software for sponsors and contract research organizations (ePharmaSolutions), and Part-11 compliant online learning solutions for research professionals (WCG Academy).

The pioneer of independent ethical oversight, WCG continues to drive progress in the clinical research space. WCG empowers clients to accelerate life-saving advancements, while ensuring that the risks of progress never outweigh the value of human life.

For more information, please visit www.wcgclinical.com or follow us on Twitter @WCGClinical.

About Certara
Certara is a global biosimulation technology-enabled drug development consultancy. Its customers include hundreds of biopharmaceutical companies around the globe, together with several regulatory agencies. Certara’s solutions, which span the discovery, preclinical and clinical stages of drug development, enable data-driven decisions, leading to more precisely designed trials with a reduced risk of failure and improved subject safety. For more information, visit www.certara.com.

About the Albert and Mary Lasker Foundation
Founded in 1942, the Albert and Mary Lasker Foundation envisions a healthier world through medical research. It seeks to improve health by accelerating support for medical research through recognition of research excellence, public education, and advocacy. For much of the 20th Century, the Foundation was led by Mary Lasker, who was America’s most prominent citizen-activist for public investment in medical research. She is widely credited with motivating the White House and Congress to greatly expand federal funding for medical research, particularly through the National Institutes of Health. For more information, please visit http://www.laskerfoundation.org.

About the International Biomedical Research Alliance
The Alliance’s mission is to support the NIH Oxford-Cambridge Scholars Program and associated global PhD and MD/PhD training programs based in the Intramural Research Program of the NIH, America’s largest biomedical research organization. Its goal is to assure the financial viability and scientific excellence of the Scholars’ program by supplementing government funding. The Alliance supports program events and scholarships designed to enrich the program and broaden the perspectives of its highly selective students as they train to become the next leaders in biomedical research. It was created in 2005 as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. For more information, please visit http://biomedalliance.org.

WCG Contact:
Cara A. Deieso, 609-945-0109
Senior Vice President, Marketing
cdeieso@wcgclinical.com

Certara Contact:
Ellen Leinfuss, 609-216-9586
Chief Marketing Officer

Albert and Mary Lasker Foundation Contact:
Janet Wootten or Courtney Greenwald
Rubenstein Communications
jwootten@Rubenstein.com; cgreenwald@Rubenstein.com

International Biomedical Research Alliance Contact:
Randi Balletta
rb@biomedalliance.org

Media Contact:
Lisa Osborne, 206-992-5245
Rana Healthcare Solutions
lisa@ranahealth.com

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