Innovation Centers / Clinical & Translational Research Center

Clinical & Translational Research Center

The purpose of the CTRC is to provide the resources necessary to facilitate translational, community-based, and multi-center clinical research projects at Meharry. We are expanding existing programs, nurturing new investigators, and encouraging full use of our services. We can conduct your study and execute your data collection. We are here to cultivate your scientific skill set and ensure you are on the road to independent research.

  • We review your studies and advise you on their feasibility.
  • We help you design and construct studies.
  • We execute your studies, drawing and processing biological samples—and collecting the necessary regulatory documents.
  • We provide you a CITI-trained nursing staff who meet regularly to discuss your protocol.
  • We offer monthly training on developments in the field of translational research.

Participate in a Trial

COVID-19 Vaccine Trials

We are currently recruiting for COVID-19 Vaccine Trials. Please email or call 615-327-6820 for information about volunteering.

Advancing our understanding of how the human body works when it is healthy and developing new, more effective vaccines and therapies requires clinical research on human beings. Unfortunately, many studies end prematurely, simply because there are not enough participants who qualify and the scientists conducting studies are unable to locate new participants.

If you would like to be contacted when we have a study relevant to your age, gender, family history, disease history, or other interests, please contact us at 615.327.6820. The CTRC can also help you sign up at, a nationwide registry that matches volunteers with scientific studies. Member institutions and their scientists can now look to the registry for a ready source of potential volunteers.

If you have questions about what it means to be a research participant, please contact the Regulatory Affairs Unit at 615.327.5654 or

Major Projects

EMERGE (Electronic Medical Records and Genomics) Trial: Results provided to 500 African American participants enrolled for genomic testing

Nashville Early Diagnosis Lung Cancer Project: High risk participant screening for lung cancer for a period of 5 years

PREVENTABLE Trial: Role of STATINS in elderly (>75 years of age) and dementia and cardiovascular disease-free survival

COVID-19 Vaccine Trials: Meharry’s CTRC approved as a site to conduct COVID-19 vaccines: Received $1.5M from Novavax

Bayer and AMGEN trials: Completed 2020. Closed to accrual.

IGNITE (Implementing Genomics in Clinical Practice) Trials: GUARDD-US (Genomic testing to Understand and Address Renal Disease Disparity in US) enrolling African- American participants with hypertension and chronic kidney disease for APOL-1 gene testing.

Clinical & Translational Research Team

Rajbir Singh, MBBS

Interim Director, Clinical and Translational Research Center & Assistant Professor
School of Medicine

(615) 327-6820

James P. Walker

Research Coordinator II/ Nurse
Clinical & Translational Research Center

(615) 327-8523

Kimberly Snell

Research Coordinator II/ Pharmacist
Clinical & Translational Research Center

(615) 327-5524

Sylvia Eluhu, MS

Research Coordinator I
Clinical & Translational Research Center

(615) 327-6989

Sherrie Baker, BS

Research Coordinator I
Clinical & Translational Research Center

(615) 327-5652

Ana Tomescu, BS

Research Coordinator II
Clinical & Translational Research Center

(615) 327-6252

Vernon Sherdon

Lab Phlebotomist
Clinical & Translational Research Center

(615) 327-5700

Clinical & Translational Research Center Publications

Prioritization of Features for Mobile Apps for Families in a Federal Nutrition Program for Low-Income Women, Infants, and Children: User-Centered Design Approach.
Summer J Weber, Elyse Shearer, Shelagh A Mulvaney, Douglas Schmidt, Chris Thompson, Jessica Jones, Haseeb Ahmad, Martina Coe, Pamela C Hull

Predicting pain among female survivors of recent interpersonal violence: A proof-of-concept machine-learning approach.
Edward Lannon, Francisco Sanchez-Saez, Brooklynn Bailey, Natalie Hellman, Kerry Kinney, Amber Williams, Subodh Nag, Matthew E Kutcher, Burel R Goodin, Uma Rao, Matthew C Morris

Association of time of day and extubation success in very low birthweight infants: a multicenter cohort study.
Brittany Guy, Mary Eva Dye, Laura Richards, Scott O Guthrie, L Dupree Hatch

Manganese-induced reactive oxygen species activate IκB kinase to upregulate YY1 and impair glutamate transporter EAAT2 function in human astrocytes in vitro.
Asha Rizor, Edward Pajarillo, Ivan Nyarko-Danquah, Alexis Digman, Leyah Mooneyham, Deok-Soo Son, Michael Aschner, Eunsook Lee

Notch as an Immunologic Basis of Cancer Disparities.
Portia LaLiah Thomas, Anil Shanker

Multiplatform computational analysis of mast cells in adrenocortical carcinoma tumor microenvironment.
Jordan J Baechle, David N Hanna, Konjeti R Sekhar, Jeffrey C Rathmell, Wendy Kimryn Rathmell, Naira Baregamian