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Translational Medical Research concentrates on the interface between experimental basic science and clinical medicine. The recent far-reaching and dynamic developments in molecular and cellular biology have set high standards for the training of future clinicians capable of working in the translational research field. The Master of Science in Translational Medical Research (MScTMR) programme builds on these demands and systematically provides students with the knowledge and skills required to participate at the cutting edge of translational medical research. The growing importance of translational medical research is recognized by a number of international research organizations and has also been repeatedly emphasised by national organisations such as the DFG (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft = German Research Foundation) and by the European Union. In addition, each student is required to choose a pre-defined set of electives directly linked to selected research focuses of our Faculty. The programme is structured into four compact teaching modules, followed by a period of individual research work and the subsequent completion of a thesis, as described below. The first coursework module includes a basic laboratory course and lectures and seminars on good laboratory practice. The second coursework module consists of six weeks of taught courses that provide the students with a thorough understanding of the molecular and cellular background of medical disorders. The fourth and final coursework module focuses on diagnostic tools and therapeutic strategies. The fifth module is scheduled within the modules two to four and deals with each module’s topics in relation to the elective subject chosen by each student, molecular oncology, neurobiology or vascular medicine. The sequence of the modules allows for full-time study from early September to the end of February (one term) so as to complete the taught modules in a concentrated manner. After successfully completing the taught part of the program, students move on to the research work for their final thesis. Coursework revolves around (a) problem- and case-based learning activities and (b) practical laboratory classes designed to develop the skills required for translational medical research.
In the course of these learning activities, the students gain in self-confidence and professionalism by presenting and defending their ideas and views to critical audiences and by listening closely to arguments and perspectives put forward by others. Heidelberg University was founded more than 600 years ago (in 1386) and is the oldest university in Germany. The programme is open to medical doctors and other professionals with an initial health-related or life science academic degree equivalent to 240 ECTS (usually a Bachelor degree after at least 4 years of full-time study).
Admission Regulations in English - Please note: the German version of the Regulations is the official and legally binding one. Full-time study (international students) means that students finish the taught parts of the programme in the first semester and write their thesis in the second semester. Tuition Fees are EUR 3,750 per semester for the full-time course and EUR 1,500 per semester for the part-time course, plus (in each case) Studentenwerksbeitrag (dues for Student Services) and an administrative fee.
Sixteen students from the Master's of Medical Education Program completed their research and gave their oral presentations on the 19th February, 2011. An integral component of Jupiter Medical Center’s mission to improve the health and well-being of our community is access to clinical trials. Jupiter Medical Center participates in clinical studies and affiliates with national research organizations to deliver clinical trials to our local community.
Deciding whether or not to enroll in a clinical trial involves careful consideration between patient and physician.
Jupiter Medical Center has a local Institutional Review Board (IRB) designated to review and monitor biomedical research involving human subjects. Jupiter Medical Center relies on your charitable gifts to ensure the quality of all that we do for our patients and their families. A good example, he says, is when the federal government’s stimulus package funded electronic health records technology development. Liebman has been global head of computational genomics at Roche Pharmaceuticals and director of computational biology at the University of Pennsylvania Cancer Center. Techonomy spoke with Liebman about what’s wrong with current big data strategies in healthcare. Most researchers are academics who aren’t focused on identifying the real clinical problems, because they don’t work with clinicians. For instance, it might look like we need a better drug for patients, when the real problem is that we require more accurate diagnosis and stratification of patients and disease to know who should receive specific drugs that are already available.
The gap between data and knowledge, unfortunately, continues to grow because new technologies support data generation, but it still requires further effort to convert that to clinical utility.

Then why is it so popular, especially in genomics, to talk about the importance of collecting more data? I suggested that where the dye goes under mechanical pressure isn’t necessarily where it might go in normal circulation. You’re saying that this breast cancer surgeon and others following that protocol were having these patients’ nodes analyzed to diagnose whether their cancer had spread, but they might not even have been collecting the right nodes? We need to look at genomic data as the architectural plan for an individual just as we would for a house. Accordingly, the aim is to “translate” knowledge, mechanisms and techniques discovered by basic scientific research into new approaches to diagnosis and the treatment of diseases. Equally, these developments dictate the need for scientists who are able to understand the rationale behind diagnosis and therapy, to define preconditions for using new molecular therapies on individual patients and who are committed to transferring scientific knowledge to clinical practice. In accordance with the major research emphases in our Faculty, students can choose to specialise in Molecular Oncology, Neurobiology or Vascular Medicine. Tutorials on literature research and critical analysis of scientific literature precede the writing of an extended essay in the form of a referenced review article. Here, students gain an insight into disease processes ranging from their molecular and cellular basis to their clinical pathologies.
The value of animal models and imaging techniques are discussed and case studies are used to demonstrate the essentials of translational medicine.
Part-time students can spread the modules over two years (modules 1 and 2 taken in the first year, modules 3 and 4 in the second).
This project is designed to enhance students’ ability to independently discern a research issue that is both relevant and substantial, choose the methodology for dealing with it, and gauge the impact of the findings at a practical and policy-related level. During the taught part of the programme, it takes the form of written in-class exams, group projects, oral presentations and individual take-home assignments. Today, as in the past, Heidelberg is a leading institution for research and teaching in Europe.
These programmes aim to attract graduate students from various subjects with a view to forming interdisciplinary teams and fostering mutual learning. Students whose mother tongue is not English must furnish evidence of proficiency in that language, usually by certification of an IELTS score of 6.5 or equivalent TOEFL score. Part-time students begin in year 1 by participating in taught modules in the 9 weeks from September to the end of October. Clinical trials are one of the most important weapons in the continuing fight against disease in addition to advancing all areas of medicine. Patient-centered, individualized discussion includes a detailed informed consent, eligibility screening and education of the benefits and possible risks related to the clinical trial.
In accordance with FDA regulations, Jupiter Medical Center’s IRB has the authority to approve, require modifications in (to secure approval), or disapprove research. Conducting global studies of disease progression, integrating health records electronically, or analyzing petabyte-size banks of DNA sequence data should hasten the pace of medical discovery and lead to faster cures, the thinking goes. Now, as managing director of two startups, Strategic Medicine and IPQ Analytics, and an advisory board member for a major pharmaceutical industry trade group, he is on a mission to prod colleagues into formulating data-gathering questions that can lead to cures.
It’s also critical to consider that disease is a process, not a state—that adds to the complexity. Breast cancer surgeons came up with a method to “identify and test the first node that the tumor would drain into” to determine if the cancer had spread. There are other factors, such as flow and the amount of time something resides at a given site, that could indicate a different “sentinel node.” The node we are evaluating and relying on to determine if the cancer has metastasized might not actually be the sentinel node.
In addition, when we collect biospecimens, such as tissue biopsies from breast cancer patients, it’s important to also annotate information about the patient. The same house, built on an oceanside cliff, in the forest, or in a large city, will not function and age the same way because of the environment, access to resources, and exposures during aging. Translation in the reverse direction is also highly pertinent, namely the translation of clinical observations into novel research issues.
Further two separate introductory modules are offered to students with different backgrounds.
One additional week is reserved for the final preparation of projects, written assignments and exams.
Lectures on drug design and clinical studies as well as a tutorial on ethics approval supplement the courses on translational medicine.

To make this a fruitful learning experience, students are systematically guided throughout the work on their thesis by an academic tutor. Up-to-date, keynote lectures supplement the student-centred learning approach of the programme. It has two medical faculties on separate campuses, one in Heidelberg and one in nearby Mannheim, both offering innovative courses of study.
Exemption from this requirement may be granted to students who have completed their prior education in English (written proof required with application). In year 2 they continue with taught modules for 14 weeks from November to the end of February. These studies may offer patients the opportunity to receive new or potentially more effective therapies, as well as state-of-the-art approaches to treatment. Patients have access to research that addresses many aspects of cancer care, including new forms of treatment, methods of prevention, ways of screening for cancer, and ways to improve comfort and quality of life for cancer patients.
Study participants receive ongoing monitoring and follow-up by the research staff throughout their participation. The purpose of IRB review is to assure, both in advance and by periodic review, that appropriate steps are taken to protect the rights and welfare of those participating as subjects in research offered by Jupiter Medical Center and its medical staff. And Liebman says not enough thought is being applied to what data should be collected in healthcare.
They didn’t put any money into determining if EHRs were collecting the right data,” Liebman says. We are buried in the era of big data, but we still need to focus on the right question and not only look to the available data as the right data. If that “sentinel node” tested negative, then they could say there is no metastasis and no reason to remove additional nodes. But you should pass on that knowledge in a way that people who do research understand the definition and its variability.  If you bury it, researchers may look under the wrong lamppost. For instance, has psychological stress—a normal response to an abnormal mammogram—increased throughout the follow-up? Humans have genomics as their architectural plan, but environmental exposure, lifestyle, and personal histories will drive what actually converts from genomic risk into disease. Colloquially, this two-way process is frequently referred to as “triple B” (from bench to bedside and back again). Students with a medical background will take the module that covers aspects of molecular and cellular biology including basic laboratory techniques, while students with a science background will take a module that introduces them to the basics of clinical medicine.
In this module students start an extended key competences project which includes the writing of a grant, reviewing of other students’ grants and a final presentation of the grant after module four. Students complement their laboratory experience with a second five-week research project in a different laboratory. Sufficient work space and largely unrestricted access to the relevant literature (UMM library) support the progress of individual learning.
Jupiter Medical Center also participates in trials addressing general medicine, surgical outcomes and biosciences.
I asked a surgeon who was giving us sentinel node biopsies to evaluate to describe how he determines which is the sentinel node we were using as a cancer diagnostic.
Without these details, we can only associate the plan with the outcome and not necessarily understand the real cause. Parallel to the courses in this module students embark on their first individual five-week research project.
As with the previous coursework modules, the fourth module consists of six teaching weeks, plus one week for the final preparations for exams. Part-time students therefore need to be registered for a period of at least five semesters with substantial interim periods in which there is no teaching.

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