The objectives of our Child Health Research Career Development Award Program are to advance research in child health and to stimulate novel research initiatives and career development for junior pediatric investigators interested in diseases of childhood. Our Program supports research career development of pediatricians who have recently completed subspecialty training and who are pursuing careers in basic, translational and/or clinical research relevant to child health. It includes didactic and research components to provide training in the pathogenesis and evolution of numerous childhood diseases, including lung disease associated with prematurity, cystic fibrosis, asthma, pneumonia, sepsis, cancer, coagulation disorders, bone marrow transplantation, diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular disease, diseases caused by viral and bacterial pathogens, and other illnesses that afflict the pediatric population. The processes underlying these diseases include acute and chronic inflammation, innate and specific immunity, cancer cell biology, stem cell biology, and oxidative stress. The technologies and methodologies to address these questions include genomics, proteomics, metabolomics, bioimaging, cell and molecular biology, bioinformatics, in vivo approaches including mutant mouse technologies, and epidemiology. A didactic phase includes training in graduate- level courses in immunobiology, epidemiology and biostatistics and other topics relevant to a scholar's interests, training in biotechnologies including genomics and proteomics, bioimaging, scientific writing and oral presentation. A critical component is the mentored research experience in the laboratories of mentors and co-mentors. The scholars will participate as full members of their selected research program, interacting with the other members of the program and with co-mentors as required for their projects. Over time, their own research programs and directions will grow from this nurturing environment. The 44 faculty mentors, 27 from 10 divisions within the Department of Pediatrics, lead outstanding, nationally recognized research programs, and they interact with many colleagues in the rich communities in cancer, immunobiology, infection, and metabolic syndrome at CWRU. The goals are 1) to provide outstanding training in collaborative multi-disciplinary research to prepare our Scholars for successful careers as independent investigators pursuing important questions in childhood diseases, 2) to develop new investigators with the necessary competencies and breadth of expertise needed for the future of biomedical research, 3) to provide excellent mentor- and co-mentorship, 4) to recruit and retain our well-trained new investigators in the scientific workforce and to ensure adequate representation of diversity among people in that workforce, and 5) to provide a continuing flow of qualified physician scientists well able to pursue basic research investigating disease processes and to translate findings freely between the basic and clinical spheres.
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