CTSA KL2 Program

We train and develop junior investigators to conduct interdisciplinary translational research.

Historically, scientists have been trained to conduct research within their own individual disciplines. Such a single-discipline approach to complex biomedical and health-related problems is unlikely to generate comprehensive solutions or to efficiently move discoveries from the basic science laboratory to clinical trials and into practice settings that improve population health.

More recently, the NIH and others have recognized the need for a paradigm shift in which investigators from diverse fields form interdisciplinary teams in order to expedite the translation of research results into practice. Thus, applicants for the KL2 Program should propose an area of research that is translational, or, seeks to improve the health of the population by transforming discoveries from laboratory into clinical practice in community and health policy.

The objective of the CTSA KL2 Program is to train and develop junior investigators to conduct such interdisciplinary translational research. These investigators will become the next generation of successful clinical/translational researchers who will lead and/or participate in the research teams of the future. Through a combination of didactic training, access to expert faculty and support for salary and research, KL2 Scholars will gain:

  • An appreciation of the spectrum of clinical/translational research including new technologies, regulations and ethical principles that influence the translation of research results into practice;
  • An understanding of methodological and analytical concepts necessary to design rigorous clinical/translational research;
  • An opportunity to apply their knowledge through research experiences that will contribute to future grant proposals;
  • Skills and experience to work on interdisciplinary research teams; and
  • An opportunity to work with a mentoring team consisting of faculty members who are expert in the career development of researchers and committed to the Scholar’s success.

KL2 Scholars are required to devote 75% of their time to research and training (Individuals in certain specialities may request permission for reduced research time with approval of NIH*). KL2 Scholars are expected to remain as a KL2 Scholar for a minimum of 2 years and a maximum of 3 years.

NOTE: Beginning in 2015, an individual Scholar's KL2 funding will be renewed annually. Each Scholar's progress and adherence to milestones proposed in the KL2 application will be reviewed and a decision made whether to continue funding for the next year.

The KL2 grant will support this time and provide the Scholar with research funds to conduct one or more projects designed to provide preliminary data for the next grant submission. In addition, KL2 Scholars have access to dedicated biostatistics and epidemiologic support as well as faculty who are experts in the career development of researchers.


More Information

KL2 Program Components

KL2 Applications