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Center for Patient-Oriented Research

Clinical research involves a wide spectrum of studies, ranging from the ones that help us to understand the underlying mechanism of the specific disease to randomized controlled trials testing the safety and effectiveness of new therapies.

Within Penn State Neuroscience Institute, the Center for Patient-Oriented Research (CPOR) team members support the good conduct of all forms of clinical research.

CPOR is dedicated to the coordination, management and overview of human-subject research that takes place at Penn State Neuroscience Institute. The mission of CPOR is to enhance, foster, and promote high-quality clinical research. As members of an academic medical center, it is our responsibility to participate in research and to make new discoveries that advance the art and science of medicine for the benefit of our current and future patients, as well as future generations worldwide.


Within the Center for Patient-Oriented Research, we support all levels of clinical research, including but not limited to investigator-initiated translational projects, multicenter specific disease registries, NIH-funded multicenter trials and industry-sponsored clinical trials.

CPOR team members have a wide breadth of research expertise. Our experienced coordinators are responsible for overseeing the day-to-day study activities, such as regulatory document preparation and maintenance, patient recruitment, enrollment, implementing study procedures, data collection and documentation, associated with each individual project. Our data managers are experienced in both creation and utilization of web based database sets, with specific expertise in the utilization of REDCap (Research Electronic Data Capture), which is a secure, web-based application designed to support data capture for research studies.

The CPOR data team is also well-equipped to perform data monitoring, verification and quality assurance. The Center is staffed with a financial analyst as well as a grant administrator, both of whom have significant roles in supporting grant submissions, as well as pre- and post-award reviews.

Finally, CPOR leadership offers a unique blend of extensive clinical, academic and industry experience in developing, implementing and managing large scale multicenter trials. Our Center is positioned to leverage this cumulative expertise in support of patient-oriented research in the Penn State Neuroscience Institute.

Our Team

The CPOR team currently comprises 10 experienced individuals with ability to support investigators in all phases of clinical-trial management, including drafting study protocols, grant package preparations and applications, pre and post-award management, study coordination, research conduct and data management. In our Center, ongoing research projects are clustered by disease type, such as nervous system tumors, cerebrovascular diseases, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, movement disorders/functional neurosurgery, each assigned to a team member with specific experience in those areas.

This approach provides increased efficiencies in patient screening and enrollment, which is the key to success in clinical trials.


CPOR also manages Penn State Neuroscience Institute’s Biorepository, which consists of tissue and fluid samples donated for future research by patients treated within the institute. This repository serves as a tissue bank for potential research projects and is offered as a CPOR service for interested clinical investigators.