The Translational Research Center at Massachusetts General Hospital features an in-house laboratory, metabolism and nutrition services, and a staff of experienced research nurses and nurse practitioners.
Laboratory: Devoted to the on-site and timely preparation of patient samples, the study team can aliquot and ship/store both routine and specialized laboratory samples (blood, urine, stool, biopsy); the laboratory contains alarmed -80 and -30 degree C freezers; as well as refrigeration for short-term storage to maintain specimen integrity, and refrigerated and room temperature centrifuges for sample preparation.
Metabolism & Nutrition Research: Dedicated nutrition services include the provision of standard meals and snacks; the design and provision of specialized research meals; expert completion of anthropometric measurements including stature and weight, circumference and skinfold assessments; specialized indirect calorimetry measurement of energy expenditure; DXA determination of bone mineral density; assessment of body composition by impedance and DXA, administration of research questionnaires and detailed analysis of nutrient intake from food records and recalls.
Nursing: Specialized nursing services include pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic studies, sampling of biologic fluids, frequent sampling protocols with maintenance of intravenous lines, physiologic measurements, administration of research questionnaires, administration of research agents and assistance in the collection of a variety of other research data. The nursing staff also ensures subject safety, including routine and specialized surveillance during all TRC visits.
At the TRC, nurse practitioners complete admission and discharge, daily rounds, assess for adverse events and in some cases consent participants. The clinical nurse specialist is an expert in clinical practice, provides consultation, and supports nursing and investigators.