The Clinical Hematology Research Career Development Program at Washington University prepares trainees (Heme Scholars) to address complex problems in non-malignant blood diseases and transfusion medicine and alleviate the shortage of academic physician-scientists in these medically important disciplines. Scholars are clinical or research Fellows, clinical or research Instructors, or recently appointed Assistant Professors. One or two Scholars per year are selected for the program, which provides support for two or three years of career development. Scholars pursue a Clinical Curriculum that involves inpatient and outpatient care of patients with specific non-malignant hematologic disorders, and a Didactic Curriculum that teaches the skills necessary for independent and ethical clinical research. The Didactic Curriculum draws on the strengths of postdoctoral and degree granting programs in biostatistics, epidemiology, public health, and clinical research at Washington University. Each Scholar participates in an intensive Mentored Research Experience to generate publishable results and preliminary data for subsequent independent grant applications. The program focuses on three major areas: (1) hematopoietic stem cell and leukocyte disorders, including paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria, aplastic anemia, congenital anemias, myleodysplastic syndrome and myeloproliferative disorders, and cellular therapies using hematopoietic stem cells;(2) hemostatic and thrombotic disorders, including von Willebrand disease, thrombotic microangiopathy, and other congenital or acquired hemorrhagic or thrombotic syndromes;and (3) hemoglobinopathies and transfusion medicine, including sickle cell disease and clinical issues involving transfusion support or apheresis. These research projects encompass pediatric, adolescent and adult subjects with non-malignant hematologic disorders. The program is designed to recruit outstanding Scholars from diverse backgrounds, to individualize their training based on their needs and experience, to continuously monitor and improve the curriculum, and to track Scholar performance. By these means, the Heme Scholar program expects to increase our national capacity for multidisciplinary translational and clinical research in non-malignant hematology and transfusion medicine.
Non-malignant blood diseases of many kinds remain major threats to public health. The Clinical Hematology Research Career Development Program at Washington University trains the next generation of physician- scientists to improve the diagnosis and treatment of non-malignant blood diseases and to improve transfusion therapy for adults and children affected by these diseases. !
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