The goal of the Washington University School of Medicine WRHR program is to promote the performance of research and transfer of findings that will benefit the health of women through the development of well-qualified, new Physician Scientists. The program will achieve this goal by providing each scholar with a core seminar series essential for his/her development as an independent investigator in women's health, a suitable mentor who can provide the guidance and expertise to assure successful academic development and skills as an independent investigator, and the research infrastructure and adequate protected time to create an environment conducive to investigation into women's health. This program is unique in that both basic and clinical science tracks separately are available to scholars;however, they train with mentors who cross disciplines and are exposed to both, in order to be able to interact and translate their own training into cooperative research. The leadership, Dr. George Macones as the PI and Dr. Kelle Moley as the PD, reflects this interactive and cooperative approach to career development in Reproductive Sciences. Their distinct backgrounds and different career pathways, Dr. Macones in the area of clinical research and Dr. Moley in the area of basic translational research, create a unique juxtaposition of leadership styles, which complement each other. Their combined efforts and vision represent the necessary melding of academic backgrounds necessary to perform outstanding investigative science in the area of Reproductive Health Research. In addition, such a multidisciplinary program, emphasizing both clinical and basic research equally, will attract the best and brightest scholars to the WUSM WRHR program. This quality sets this Career Development Program apart from those preceding it at other locations. WUSM is ranked the third best medical school in the USA as reported in US News &World Report and it has a rich scientific history in basic and clinical science research. Given our existing strengths, we believe the theme which unites the mentors involved in the WUSM WRHR Program is the translation of basic research into patient-oriented, clinical research to improve women's health. This uniting concept is shared by our specific focus areas of expertise including: 1) Women's Infectious Diseases (Drs. Hultgen, Gordon and Peipert);2) Endometrial Cancer: Genetics and Cancer Disparities (Drs. Goodfellow, Milbrandt, Colditz, Rader and Mutch);3) Developmental Biology: Stem Cells and Origins of Adult Disease (Drs. Moley, Schedl, Gottleib, Schaffer, and Semenkovich);4) Behavioral Health, Health Disparities and Contraception (Drs. Peipert, Cottler and Gelbart);5) Developmental Neurology and Maternal Fetal Physiology (Drs. Inder, VanEssen, and Holtzman;6) Placental Biology and Maternal Fetal Interaction (Drs. Nelson, Atkinson and Yokoyama).
The long term objective of this application is to take advantage of the significant resources and experience within WUSM and the Department of OB/GYN to train and promote the development of future leaders in biomedical research in the reproductive sciences. This structured and thoughtfully designed program will allow them the opportunity to immerse themselves in the reproductive sciences in a way in which they may not have been able to pursue in a broader, scientific discipline. If successful, we hope to produce well trained physician scientists who will pursue reproductive research questions with a basic science-driven approach or a clinical- based investigative strategy combined with an appreciation and understanding of both.
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