Cairo University (Kasr El-Ainy) is a leading educational institution in Egypt and the Middle East and has been a leading medical training institution for almost a century, training MDs as practitioners and medical leaders throughout the region. Advances in medicine and health services delivery have required increased application of emerging research findings and health-related questions specific to Egyptian society have emerged. There is an increasing demand for Cairo University to develop a research capacity to use and contribute to the research in medicine and health care delivery. The Fogarty International Research Training Program is an excellent mechanism to link the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) School of Medicine with the Cairo University School of Medicine (Cairo U) in a beneficial collaborative agreement by extending the existing relationship between the universities'Departments of Psychiatry to build Cairo U's capacity in the area of research on substance use disorders, their treatment and on the systems of care that deliver treatment in Egypt. Egypt needs a research capacity to: 1. determine the nature and extent of substance use disorders;2. assess the efficacy and effectiveness of specific treatments;and, 3. quantitatively evaluate innovative treatment service delivery efforts. While clinical trials research is the major theme of the training program, there is a diversity of research knowledge and expertise at UCLA ISAP. Fellows will also receive tremendous exposure to research on the basic neurophysiology of addiction, brain imaging research, human laboratory research methods, women and adolescent issues, medical sequellae of drug use (including HIV and hepatitis), epidemiological research, health services research, drug abuse and the criminal justice system, and many other areas. The proposed training plan will include: 2 long-term fellows, who will spend 12 and 6 months at UCLA (10 over 5 years);2 short-term fellows who will visit UCLA and attend CPDD meeting (10 over 5 years);an annual addiction research institute conference in Cairo;2 week-long workshops by 4 UCLA faculty members in Cairo;distance learning participation by Cairo U fellows and other Cairo U psychiatric faculty in regularly scheduled UCLA substance abuse research seminars;travel by Dr. Tarek Gawad and the 4 fellows to College on Problems of Drug Dependence and UCLA. Each fellow will have a faculty research mentor from UCLA to oversee a plan of research knowledge/skills development. Small grants will be awarded to fellows to conduct a research project. Dr. Gawad, Associate Director of the Addiction Unit at Cairo U and Dr. Rawson, Associate Director of UCLA ISAP, will coordinate all activities.
The aims of this training program are to: (1) Engage current Cairo U faculty and MD Candidates into careers in research;(2) Introduce and initiate research interests and skills of MSc candidates;(3) Increase research training throughout the Cairo U medical curriculum (4) Address substance use research questions of importance in Egypt, and finally;(5) Promote successful NIDA and other research grants by Cairo U faculty and students.
The proposed training program is of considerable public health significance in that UCLA Integrated Substance Abuse Programs will provide pivotal training to Cairo University faculty and students that will extend extends a current partnership to build the addiction research capacity in the Cairo University School of Medicine. The proposed project will provide Cairo University students with pivotal training in addiction research careers and develop successful grant writing and research publication skills and to infuse the Cairo University medical training with enhanced research appreciation, knowledge, and skills.