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CTSI Special Populations: About

CTSA Integrating Special Populations Core

Duke Integrating Special Populations Core

The Integrating Special Populations Core launched in May of 2017 to facilitate the integration of traditionally underserved populations in clinical research. These special populations include infants and children/pediatric populations, adolescents and young adults, older adults, pregnant people, people with disabilities and/or rare disorders, people who have been underrepresented in clinical research (e.g. African Americans, Native Americans, Latinos, or populations with low socioeconomic status), rural populations, and LGBTQ+ Health. We provide infrastructure, resources, and training to amplify science and accelerate discoveries in special populations. We also build workforce capacity through training and growing professional networks of investigators engaged in special population research. 

What we Do

  1. Provide resources to accelerate life course and disparities research
  2. Build workforce capacity in life course and health disparities research
  3. Expand professional networks of life course and disparities investigators

Meet Our Leadership

 Keisha Bentley-Edwards, PhD | Duke Divinity School Keisha Bentley-Edwards, PhD, Duke Associate Professor of Internal Medicine; Associate Director of Samuel Dubois Cook Center 

 Dwight Koeberl, MD, PhD, Duke Professor of Pediatrics and Molecular Genetics & Microbiology 

  Jillian Hurst, PhD, Duke Assistant Professor of Pediatrics; CHDI Director; CHDI-CTSI Child Health Equity Program, Lead 

Who We Are | Duke Clinical & Translational Science Institute K.K. Lam, PhD, Director of Operations for Special Populations Core; Child Trials Project Leader III 

 Sydney Sullivan, MPH, ISP Research Program Manager  

 Eisha Baig, BS, ISP Program Coordinator 



The beta version of the Inclusion in Clinical Research Snapshot, formerly known as the ISP Dashboard of Inclusion, is live on our e-lib. This snapshot tracks the inclusion of special populations in Duke clinical research studies using OnCore data. We are preparing our manuscript to describe the development of the snapshot and plan to submit it for publication in Spring 2023. 

We have expanded the 5Ts recommendations, to the African-American and LatinX populations in partnership with CERI through community consult studios (CCSs) with both African-American and LatinX participants across the lifespan and with research coordinators who have successfully recruited and retained these demographic groups in clinical research studies. In parallel, we are building a 5Ts website to allow research staff and others to access 5Ts recommendations for various special populations. 

The ISP Core is excited to be partnering with the CHDI Health Equity Program, led by Jillian Hurst, funded through a Translating Duke Health (TDH) award. We released the full RFA in December 2021 and have selected 4 awardees