About us


The Vanderbilt Center for Population Science and Randomized Clinical Trials leverages large population cohorts involving millions of participants with granular mechanistic studies to design and conduct clinical trials to improve human health locally and globally and trains the next generation of population scientists/clinical trialists. 

In 2014, Dr. Matthew Freiberg founded and directed the Vanderbilt Center for Clinical Cardiovascular Outcomes Research and Trials Evaluation (V-CREATE). Now the center has evolved to become the Vanderbilt Center for Population Science and Randomized Clinical Trials (V-POLARIS).  

During our first decade, our team has:

  • Successfully competed for NIH R01, U01, and P01 funding.
  • Contributed to the construction of a new 16 million person observational cohort.
  • Enjoyed collaborations with national laboratories and other government agencies.
  • Built natural language processing platforms within the Veteran Health Administration that have been deployed in the VUMC research derivative.  
  • Collaborated on a virtual tissue repository and image library within the Veterans Health Administration.
  • Founded a new NHLBI K12 training program with minority and women scholars who have received NIH, Doris Duke, and Burroughs Wellcome career development awards.
  • Contributed to grant submissions or future grant submissions with faculty from the departments of medicine and surgery and the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center (VICC).

Expanding beyond HIV and CVD

The V-POLARIS team continues to donate time and effort to help other investigators at Vanderbilt University Medical Center and beyond. We contribute to numerous unfunded and funded research projects including multiple R01 grant applications. These projects represent faculty from across VUMC including the departments of medicine and surgery and the VICC.  

Our evolution as a population science and clinical trials center started with individual grants focused on HIV and cardiovascular disease (Phase 1). Phase 2 began when we received a K12 NHLBI training grant designed to train the next generation of investigators with expertise in HIV and heart, lung, blood, and sleep disease and a P01 center grant. 

We are now embarking on Phase 3, a partnership with the VA's Million Veteran Program and Yale University's Veterans Aging Cohort Study, to create an institutional resource.  

Our funding

Since our founding in 2014, our team has received 10 new R01/U01 grants, a new P01 center grant, and a new K12 training program. You can view our NIH funding details here.   

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