This an inaugural issue of MRUN Bulletin which focuses on translational research is a timely effort. Since UM, USM, UKM, UPM and UTM were declared as research universities, we have been not overly seen as a consortium that thrives as a single unit. There have been various collaborations between the research universities, but they were carried out based on the initiatives of individual scholars, working on specific research grants that require collaborative effort. With the establishment of Malaysia Research Universities Research Network (MRUN), the five universities aim for visibility as a cohesive group, whose combined strengths in various disciplines can reap better gains nationally and internationally.
This maiden issue focuses specifically on translational research. In his annual address this year, the Minister of Higher Education, Dato’ Seri Haji Idris bin Jusoh announced 2017 as the Year of Translational Research. Through translational research, Dato’ Seri Haji Idris emphasizes that universities could play a role to benefit industry, academics, government and society in general.
Translational research is a familiar term in medical parlance. Its term is used widely to refer to “the bench to bedside and bedside to bench” ecosystem for the benefit for the society at large. All our research activities should bring about improvements for the well-being of humanity. It is important to translate our research that is oriented towards providing solutions for our society’s pressing demands. Based on predictions of future problems such as aging population, marked increase of uncommunicable disease, rise of earth’s temperature, how can we tailor our research so that we are not only generating new knowledge, but at the same time, we use our knowledge and innovations to nurture growth and well-being of the nation, its diverse communities and industries. There have been many examples of translational research already carried out, but the declaration of 2017 as the Year of Translational Research highlights it pressing agenda. The impact of each research should resonate with the needs of communities of industries.
I would like to thank you the team involved in producing this first issue. The articles in this volume provide insights into the kinds of translational research carried out at various research universities. Together, as a consortium, we will grow from strength to strength, and execute our function as one of the primary drivers of knowledge economy, bridging gaps between various stakeholders for the betterment of our lives.