Barbara Wold Named the Director of the Institute for Translational Research at the CalTech

Barbara Wold, the Bren Professor of Molecular Biology, has been appointed as the director of the Richard N. Merkin Institute for Translational Research at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena. The institute, established earlier this year, aims to help CalTech scientists and engineers transform their breakthroughs into advances in human health and enhance resources for every step in translational science, from basic discovery through clinical collaboration and the introduction of new treatments.

“CalTech’s great, unchanging strength is our capacity to make fundamental scientific breakthroughs and the inventions that flow from them,” Professor Wold says. “Those advances can drive big changes in medicine, but the path from a basic discovery to a treatment or medical device can be long and full of roadblocks. The new Merkin Institute promises to remove roadblocks and catalyze the best at each step: We make a discovery, relate the insight to human biology, develop the medical applications, and then mine data from precision medicine to drive new rounds of discovery.”

Dr. Wold, a genome biologist, joined the CalTech faculty in 1981. She served as the director of the Beckman Institute at CalTech from 2001–11 and was the founder, in 2012, of the National Cancer Institute’s Center for Cancer Genomics.

Professor Wold is a graduate of Arizona State University. She earned a Ph.D. at CalTech.

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