The current influenza pandemic has made evident the gaps in knowledge about and response capacity for emerging infectious diseases. In the first stage of our award, """"""""Peru Infectious Diseases Epidemiology Research Training Consortium"""""""", the NMRCD-UPCH-JHBSPH-USUHS consortium has contributed to building sustainable research capacity in Peru. Two Masters'graduates and one PhD candidate returned to Peru and are studying key epidemiologic and ecologic aspects of pandemic and seasonal influenza, and three trainees are finishing coursework. Also, we established a nearly self-sustainable, tuition-funded Epidemiology Masters in Peru which is taught by 30+ Peruvian/foreign PhDs and PhD candidates, many funded by NIH research and training grants. We have trained 43 students in two successive cohorts, and students from the first cohort have published 13 papers in peer-reviewed journals within a year of training. Important progress has been made, but substantial efforts are still needed. The renewal proposal will consolidate our work by 1) supporting degree completion of current trainees and nurturing return to Peru, and 2) complete establishment a world-class and self-sustainable Epidemiology Masters program in Peru, 3) broadening training options in Peru via a Summer Institute of Epidemiological Research, 4) build capacity in Andean Ministries of Health through 4 ear-marked Masters scholarships, 5) formally adding the CDC and Universidad San Marcos as key partners. This second award will support 2 PhD students, 20 Masters Graduates and 21 students of certificate programs, 30% of them trained in the US. The consortium will continue to use the proven, successful approach of combining coursework, applied research, and mentored achievement-driven progression and using all training programs available. Trainees will prepare a protocol, obtain IRB approval, conduct research, submit a manuscript, and apply for external funding, completing the research cycle. Training will take place in a superb environment of the consortium which includes numerous successful NIH collaborations, extensive multi-year research, a large pool of highly trained local and foreign mentors, sophisticated laboratories, and diverse field and clinical sites.

Public Health Relevance

We built sustainable research capacity in our first award by creating a high-quality Epidemiology Masters Program in Peru and combining with advanced degree training in the US. The first trainees are conducting important studies on seasonal and pandemic influenza and published important studies rapidly. The renewal proposal should consolidate these efforts with further local training in Peru, reaching out to Ministries of Health in Andean countries and complete establishing self-sustainable advanced programs in Peru

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Fogarty International Center (FIC)
International Research Training Grants (D43)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZRG1-ICP2-B (50))
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Sina, Barbara J
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Naval Medical Research Unit Number Six
Silver Spring
United States
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