We propose to modify a series of courses into a highly relevant NIDDK educational activity. {Despite promising clinical studies in patients with diabetic complications, such as diabetic nephropathy, retinopathy and cardiovascular disease as examples, pharmaceutical companies have been reluctant to pursue drug development in this important area. NIDDK has duly stepped in with several initiatives to support research and drug development for diabetic complications. As such, our ultimate goal will be to teach a diverse group of targeted learners at the graduate level and beyond} to harness novel bench-to-bedside empirical knowledge in their research {and related endeavors} with a focus on diabetes, {diabetic complications}, and obesity, specific, comorbid, and pervasive public health problems. {We will highlight the importance of designing therapeutic interventions based on target changes during the disease;for example, some targets may be more relevant in initiation, others more in progression, and some more in failure of regression and regeneration.} The programmatic theme that emphasizes translation of research discoveries to patient care will be drug discovery and development. The current yearlong course series reviews Phase I-IV trials, post- marketing trajectories, safety monitoring, drug patents, and economic stimulus reform as well as ethics and cost analysis in the fall semester. In the spring semester, the molecular pathways and scientific basis of successful and unsuccessful drugs are discussed. Our preliminary experience has established that together, the two course segments (and ongoing didactic seminar series) help to disabuse the limiting belief that individuals cannot directly work towards inventing drugs, and the educational activity directs the diverse interests of this wide range of trainees towards the inspirations and rewards of translating basic science discoveries into useful patient care tools. Qualitative and quantitative reporting tools and performance tasks will evaluate the program to assure achievement of educational goals as well as future expansion of the program. Progress in achieving these objectives would mean increased NIDDK-relevant translational research skills for the diverse participants to ultimately improve patient care and public health.

Public Health Relevance

Drug discovery and development is a broad, multidisciplinary process that integrates all components of the translational question and continuum, from molecular signaling pathways at the bench to public health policies and practice standards. Our goal is to implement a unique educational activity that will encompass the many essential features of this innovative process. Achievement of this program's goals may make an identifiable contribution towards ensuring that highly trained scientists will be available in adequate numbers and in appropriate scientific areas to address the nation's biomedical, behavioral, and clinical research needs in the NIDDK's mission areas {specifically diabetes, diabetic complications, and obesity as areas of focus in this proposed educational program}.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
Education Projects (R25)
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Study Section
Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolic Diseases B Subcommittee (DDK)
Program Officer
Pawlyk, Aaron
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New York University
Schools of Medicine
New York
United States
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