TL1 Translational Sciences Postdoctoral Program (TSPP)

The objective of the TL1 Translational Sciences Postdoctoral Program (TSPP) at Washington University is to demystify the processes of commercialization of new technology/translational discoveries by learning how to move projects to the next stage of commercialization and how to establish value-creating milestones, costs, and timelines.

Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. The TL1 Postdoc Job Description is available for more details.

These postdoctoral opportunities are rooted in an exciting culture of start-up companies and commercialization of biotechnology. In the past two years, St. Louis has been named one of the best start-up cities in the world.  St. Louis now hosts a rapidly advancing start-up ecosystem that pairs multiple maker spaces, accelerators, and coworking facilities with larger biotechnology and informatics companies.  Together, these create a variety of opportunities for start-up funding at multiple levels. Washington University is a major driver of this exciting local community of biotechnology innovation and commercialization. The scope of the TL1 program is translational science from bench-to-bedside and bedside-to-bench research. The program has the broad ability to include research projects in late-stage preclinical, first-in-human, clinical, translational, patient-oriented research, population health and community engagement, and biomedical informatics.

The three main areas of focus:

  1.  Entrepreneurship
    This area of focus will study the translation of biomedical research into viable technologies and startups. Primary mentoring will be with the Skandalaris Center and applicants are required to contact the center and review their project prior to submitting their application. Trainees will focus on learning and experiencing new ways to translate scientific discoveries into commercializable products and innovations in order to improve human health. Our objective is to better equip trainees to distill and advance the most promising opportunities to improve human health through innovation and entrepreneurship.
  2. Research Innovation and Technology Transfer 
    Training will focus on identifying past and current trends with the goal of identifying novel opportunities for future improvement via entrepreneurial activities. By blending innovation in both the research and commercial strategies underlying the approval of new biomedical products, the Center for Research Innovation in Biotechnology (CRIB) seeks to anticipate future unmet needs and opportunities to ensure and maximize the efficiency and continuity of new medical innovations. Trainees will identify and analyze the sources of innovation responsible for creation of medical interventions, including pharmaceuticals, vaccines, and medical devices. Trainees in this track will also participate in the evaluation of Washington University discoveries for commercial potential and identify current factors responsible for affecting commercialization and licensing of technologies. Trainees will receive additional opportunities to learn about patenting, licensing, and technology transfer via didactic and experiential training in the Washington University Office of Technology Management. Applicants are required to contact Dr. Michael Kinch and review their project prior to submitting their application.
  3. Dissemination and Implementation
    Dissemination and implementation (D&I) research is the scientific study of methods to promote the uptake of proven clinical treatments, programs, and policies into routine use in new settings. It seeks to understand the process of factors that are associated with successful integration of evidence-based interventions within a particular setting. Closing the gap between discovery and practice is both a challenge and a necessity if we are to ensure all populations benefit from the nation’s investments in scientific discovery. Applicants are required to contact Dr. Enola Proctor and review their project prior to submitting their application. Trainees will have the opportunity to work with world leaders in D&I research and will have the opportunity to participate in targeted externship experiences.

Program Leadership:

Email Us: TL1 Postdoctoral Program Inquiries » 


TL1 Postdoctoral Trainees will select courses and participate in mentored experiential learning to compliment research training programs and provide  core innovation and entrepreneurship skills. Additional mentorship will be provided through the TL1 Program Directors.

Other benefits of the program include:

Monthly Stipend

Health Insurance

Tuition for Coursework

Course tuition is covered through NIH and Institutional support.

Research Funding

Trainees receive a limited amount of funding to use for their research projects throughout the duration of their appointments.

Travel to National Meetings

Funding is available for TL1 Trainees to attend the annual Translational Science National Meeting.

Clinical Research Training Center (CRTC)

All TL1 Trainees have access to the CRTC, which provides computer labs, break-out rooms, classroom, poster printing, and administrative office suites.

Program Requirements

Full-time Appointment

All trainees are required to pursue their research training and experiential innovation projects full-time, normally defined as 40 hours per week. Trainees are expected to complete no less than 24 months, and no more than 36 months, of full-time clinical research as active members of their chosen mentor’s research team.

Mentorship Meetings

It is the responsibility of all TL1 Trainees to schedule and participate in Primary Mentor Meetings weekly. Trainees are also required to meet quarterly with their full mentorship committees, which include the Primary Mentor, the assigned Program Mentor, and the assigned Entrepreneurship Content Expert.

Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR)

Trainees must complete training in the Responsible Conduct of Research. The TL1 Program provides all trainees with access to seminars and/or coursework that must be successfully completed in order to fulfill the RCR requirement.

TL1 Interdisciplinary Clinical Research Training Seminar

Trainees must participate in the weekly TL1 Interdisciplinary Clinical Research Training Seminar for the entirety of their appointment.

Annual Translational Science Meeting and Abstract

Trainees must submit at least one abstract to the annual Translational Science Meeting. This abstract will be published and distributed at the meeting. Trainees are required to attend the meeting and to present either a poster or an oral presentation on their research.

Research Training Symposium and Poster Session

The Washington University School of Medicine hosts the Research Training Symposium and Poster Session annually in October. All TL1 Trainees are required to submit an abstract and present either a poster or oral presentation on their research.

CRTC Career Development Seminars

TL1 Trainees are expected to attend the Career Development Seminars held monthly throughout the academic year. These seminars are focused on topics such as team management, work/life balance, individual development plans, and negotiation.


Level of Education

TL1 Postdoctoral Trainees are required to have a PhD, MD, MD/PhD, or DVM degree prior to starting the program.


Eligible applicants must be citizens or non-citizen nationals of the United States, or have been lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence and have in their possession an Alien Registration Receipt Card (I-151 or I-551) or other legal verification of admission for permanent residence. Non-citizen nationals are persons born in lands that are not States but are under U.S. sovereignty, jurisdiction, or administration (e.g., American Samoa). Individuals on temporary or student visas are not eligible.

Professional Effort

All trainees are required to pursue their research training full-time, normally defined as 40 hours per week.

Federal Funding

Individuals supported by other Federal funds are not eligible for concurrent support to be provided by the TL1 Program.

Research  Interest

Interest in accelerating translation through commercialization and entrepreneurship.


Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

  1. Application Form
  2. Cover Letter
  3. Curriculum Vitae
  4. Official Transcript
  5. Statement of Proposed Project
  6. Letter of Reference
  7. Mentor Letter of Support
  8. Contact the program mentor to discuss the project prior to submitting the application

Applicants must submit all required documents in order to be considered for the TL1 Program. An  in-person or online interview will be required for applicants in the final round of selection.

TL1 Postdoc Application Form »

Curriculum Vitae

Applicants must upload a copy of their current curriculum vitae.


Applicants must submit a copy of an official transcript from their doctoral degree program. It is the responsibility of the applicant to request the official transcript to be mailed by the institution directly to:

TL1 Postdoctoral Program
Clinical Research Training Center
Washington University School of Medicine
660 South Euclid Avenue, Campus Box 8051
St. Louis, MO 63110

Statement of Proposed Project

Applicants must submit a one-page statement outlining their research interests or proposed project and how they relate to this program.

Applicants must identify a mentor within the description of research interests and must have the named mentor provide a letter of support for the application (see below). If applicable, applicants must also  identify whether they plan to work with their own ideas and/or commercializable products during this appointment, or if they will work with their mentor’s projects.

Letter of Reference

The application also requires that one letter of reference be sent via email to the TL1 Program. It is the responsibility of the applicant to request the letter of reference. Letter of Reference must be submitted by the reference, not the applicant.

Mentor Letter of Support

The application requires that a letter of support be submitted via email to the TL1 Program directly from the proposed mentor, not the applicant. Mentor letters must note the support that will be provided to the fellow throughout the appointment.