Clinical Trials Unit (CTU) at USC

Price: Contact us for a custom package

Provides a broad range of services to assist in the initiation and conduct of human services

University of Southern California (USC)
Goal: Access Outpatient Clinical Trials Unit
Phase: Design A Study
Phase: Set Up A Study
Phase: Conduct A Study

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Service description

The Clinical Trials Unit (CTU) “is a one-stop shop with highly qualified personnel and offers a broad range of services for investigators to conduct study visits ranging low complexity to high complexity.”

CTU Services At-a-Glance

Services offered

  • Obtain history, review of systems, medication reconciliation, and perform physical exams and clinical assessments 
  • Order and interpret labs/diagnostics, medications, durable medical equipment, referrals
  • Assist with data collection
  • Screen participants and obtain consent
  • Assist with clinical management (i.e. management of AEs and SAEs)
  • Common Clinical Procedures
    • Vital signs, height, weight, BSA
    • Blood draws via direct venipuncture, peripheral IV, and central line, including serial blood sampling for PK and PD samples. 
    • Blood glucose via finger stick
    • Urine pregnancy test
    • Body fluid collections (buccal swab, urine, stool, or sputum).
  • Administration of medications and investigational drugs/products 
    • Routes include oral, topical, intramuscular & subcutaneous injections, intravenous, inhalation)
    • Chemotherapy (routes include oral, inhalation, SQ and IV infusions).
    • Administration of IV fluids
  • Cardiac assessments
    • Single, triplicate, serial 12- lead ECG (no interpretation)
    • Holter monitoring and telemonitoring
  • CTU Body composition services:
    • DEXA scan of whole body composition, hip, and/or spine.
    • Waist-hip circumference.
    • Skin fold measurement (per site)
  • Patient observation
  • Specimen processing (blood, hair follicle, stool, saliva)
    • Serum/plasma separation
    • Aliquoting
  • Processing via refrigerated centrifuge, microcentrifuge
  • Whole blood without processing (no centrifugation)
  • Urine or 24 hour urine collection
  • Hematology slides (blood smear)
  • Buffy coat separation
  • WBC from Whole Blood
  • Serum/plasma ultrafiltrate
  • Quantiferon Gold
  • Short term storage in -80 deg C freezer, -20 deg C freezer, and/or small incubator
  • Labelling, shipping, and handling
  • Blood transfusion
  • Procedures that require moderate sedation or deeper sedation
  • PMBC isolation with cell counts
  • Glucose analysis using YSI glucose analyzer*
  • Unable to do any processing that requires fume hoods, microscope or cell counter

* For services not offered, feel free to contact us for further guidance as there may be other possible anxillary services to coordinate with.

Benefits for users

  • Highly qualified research personnel
    CTU employs research staff includes research nurse practitioners, research nurses, phlebotomists, radiology technicians, and lab technicians to meet all your human study needs
  • Specimen processing center
    The CTU Specimen processing center processes, stores, and ships research samples.
  • Consultation services
    The CTU provides consultation services to assist investigators and study teams with all operational aspects of coordinating a study from reviewing a protocol for feasibility, service pricing, budget development, hospital credentialing for medical and research staff, providing a letter of support for grant applications, IRB support, etc.
  • Dedicated collaboration with ancillary services
    Close partnership with Investigational Drug Services (IDS) pharmacy, radiology, Norris inpatient hospital, and more to facilitate smooth conduct of research.
  • Dedicated human research space
    Outpatient clinic rooms located at the USC Norris Hospital available for monitoring participants in a calm and private environment.

To set up a consultation or discuss services in more detail, please email

Contact information

Yolanda Gutierrez
Assistant Director for Clinical Research Operations


View Email

Lilit Baronikian
CTU Lab Supervisor

323-865-3379 (office) or 818-642-4838 (cell)

View Email

Tooltip: Clinical Trial Management System (CTMS)

USC’s Clinical Trial Management System, OnCore, is a jointly sponsored, web-based software system for managing clinical trials.

Click here

NIH Funding Acknowledgment: Important - All publications resulting from the utilization of SC CTSI resources are required to credit the SC CTSI grant by including the NIH funding acknowledgment and must comply with the NIH Public Access Policy.