MD Anderson Cancer Center UTHealth
Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences

Predoctoral & Postdoctoral Training
in Clinical & Translational Sciences
at UTHealth and MD Anderson Cancer Center

The CCTS TL1 Training Program 2020 call for applications is now closed.
Notification of application results will occur in December.

In general, "translational" science can be classified into four categories: T1, T2, T3, T4.

T1 / T2 [translating to patients]: making & adapting laboratory discoveries for treatment of human disease

T3 / T4 [translating to community]: establishing, disseminating, & implementing best practices for clinic- and community-based interventions

Trans Circle-crop

Translational research is not unidirectional; it is a type of continuum.  Community observations can inspire laboratory experiments just as laboratory animal studies can influence clinical treatment and community prevention initiatives.  And, at every T level, information needs to be disseminated for implementation.

In this program:

Clinical Research involves direct human subject interaction.

Translational Research can:

[definitions modified from recommendations by the NCI Translational Working Group (2006) and the CTSA RFA-RM-10-020]

The 2020 Application period is now closed. 

Call for Applications


September 7, 2020, 5PM Applications Due
Mid November Application Review
Early December Candidate Selection
Jan 1, 2021 Appointments Begin

Applying to the TL1 Program

Appointments to the training grant are for 12 months with the option of competitive renewal for an additional 12-month appointment for a maximum of 2 years.  Renewal of appointment is contingent upon annual evaluation of performance metrics and full participation in the program.

All TL1 Trainees are expected to develop a curriculum/training plan that will enable them to achieve core competencies in clinical and translational research. These competencies are fulfilled by conducting research, completing clinical and translational courses offered by participating CCTS schools and institutions, and participating in seminars, research retreats, and other activities that provide training in clinical and translational research.

Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible for the TL1 Program, applicant's must be predoctoral student or postdoctoral trainee currently conducting a clinical or translational research project.  Additional eligibility criteria can be found here.

Application Materials

Applications are to be submitted online: TL1 Application Portal. All supporting documents should be uploaded as individual PDF files.  Text is single spaced, 11pt Arial font, with ½-inch margins on all sides.

  1.  Cover Form (download here)
  2. Trainee Biosketch (5 pages)
    1. Please include an NIH-formatted Fellowship Applicant Biosketch
    2. NIH Biosketch Instructions along with examples can be found at:
  3. Mentor Biosketch (5 pages)
    1. Please include an NIH-formatted Biosketch
  4. Co-Mentor Biosketch (if applicable) (5 pages)
    1. Please include an NIH formatted Biosketch
  5. Career Goals and Training Plan (2 pages)
    1. Describe your long-term career goals and how the combination of past research experiences and the TL1 training program will contribute to achieving these goals
    2. Summarize the scientific and professional development activities you will undertake and explain how these activities will facilitate the transition to each subsequent career stage
  6. Research Proposal
    1. Specific Aims (1 page)
      1. A summary of the proposed project (rationale/background, gap in knowledge), hypothesis statement, and 2-3 specific aims that briefly outline how each aim will address the hypothesis
      2. The clinical and/or translational significance to human health must be clearly outlined
    2. Research Strategy (4 pages)
      1. Research proposal detailing the research project, specific aims, experimental approaches, anticipated outcomes, potential pitfalls and alternative approaches
      2. Proposals will be evaluated for
        1. Clinical and/or translational significance to human health
        2. Approach
        3. Innovation
    3. Literature Cited (no page limit)
  7. Letters of Support (2 pages each)
    1. Please provide letters of support from your Mentor, Co-mentor (if applicable), and one additional faculty member
    2. Letters should demonstrate the candidate’s commitment to a career in clinical/translational sciences and how the trainee will benefit from training in the TL1 program

Review Criteria

Applications are reviewed by the TL1 Leadership and Internal Advisory Board. Appointments are made based on the scientific merit of the proposal including: the student's accomplishments; the mentor's accomplishments and ability to support the student's clinical/translational research; and the presence or potential for clinical and basic science collaborations.

For more information on trainee eligibility or application, please contact Nicolle Patterson (713.500.9886).