Formerly the Specialized Cooperative Centers Program in Reproduction and Infertility Research (SCCPIR)
The NCTRI, originally called the Specialized Cooperative Centers Program in Reproduction and Infertility Research (SCCPIR), is a national network of research-based centers that promotes multidisciplinary interactions between basic and clinical scientists interested in establishing high quality translational research programs in the reproductive sciences. The centers also serve as national resources for the training and career development of young scientists electing to pursue careers conducting research in high priority areas of reproduction and infertility. Such a program forms a national network of Centers that facilitates and accelerates bidirectional knowledge transfer between the laboratory and clinic, with the ultimate goal of improving human reproductive health through enhanced communication, innovation and research excellence.
The first request for applications was issued in 1996, and the first four awards were issued in 1998. Currently, the NCTRI network of P50 centers is located at 11 sites across the country. In addition, R01 projects are funded at Johns Hopkins University and the Baylor College of Medicine. The program now includes 8 sites around the country, and it is supported by the NICHD Fertility and Infertility (FI) Branch through a P50 funding mechanism. A committee, comprising each site's principal investigator and the FI Branch project scientist, meets yearly to discuss the program's research and collaborative efforts.
Each center supports one- to two-year pilot projects that may be used to support new investigators, established investigators, or collaborative projects involving investigators from different NCTRI centers. An Outreach/Education Core supports activities related to community outreach and education.
The research activities that comprise the NCTRI center grants must be consistent with the broad research mission of the FI Branch; these include (but are not limited to) those described below:
The NCTRI has several research focus groups to promote interactions among investigators from different centers on specific topics. Focus group meetings provide an arena for investigators to present their unpublished research findings and to develop pilot collaborative projects. Current focus groups are interested in the following areas:
The NICHD, through the NCTRI program, also has supported or presently supports several research resources including the Endometrial Tissue and DNA Bank (UCSF)
, the Human Placenta Bank (UCSF), and the Ligand Assay and Analysis Core
(UVa). The NCTRI program also supports the Ovarian Kaleidoscope Database
,which contains information regarding the biological function, expression pattern, and regulation of genes expressed in the ovary. It also provides information on gene sequences, chromosomal localization, human and murine mutation phenotypes, and biomedical publication links.