The Geographic Medicine and Infectious Diseases Training Program at Case Western Reserve University (CWRU) provides rigorous research training for 4 post-doctoral M.D. or Ph.D. fellows per year. Since its beginning in 1977, the Program has emphasized interdisciplinary training in research to understand and solve infectious disease problems, particularly co-mentorship by scientists with complementary expertise in immunology, genetics, molecular biology, biochemistry, epidemiology, biostatistics, clinical trial design and clinical outcomes as they relate to the pathogenesis, transmission and control of infection. Program faculty includes 28 mentors from 10 departments and 3 centers, all located within the health sciences complex on the CWRU campus and the Louis B. Stokes Veterans Administration Medical Center. Trainees are mentored by a process that includes participation in coursework, individual lab research meetings and regular seminars, and attending national and international meetings. All mentors have independent NIH or other extramural research funding, and work closely with related structures at CWRU that promote infectious diseases research -the NIH Tuberculosis Research Unit, Center for AIDS Research, AIDS Clinical Trials Unit, Midwest Regional Center of Excellence in Biodefense and Emerging Infectious Diseases Research, and the Center for Antimicrobial Resistance and Epidemiology. Four of the Program's 28 mentors are women, and 2 are an underrepresented minority. The Program emphasizes infectious diseases that have great health significance in the United States and the developing world - anti-bacterial drug resistance, tuberculosis, malaria, HIV, chronic worm infections that include the "Neglected Tropical Diseases" filariasis and schistosomiasis and emerging infections. A unique feature is the opportunity to participate in research at overseas sites where Program mentors have ongoing NIH-funded projects, e.g. Uganda, Kenya, Papua New Guinea, Brazil and South Africa. U.S. trainees may also interact with foreign collaborators participating in CWRU Fogarty International Center-supported partnership programs in Uganda and Papua New Guinea. 22 postdoctoral fellows completed their training between 1998 and 2008;17 now hold academic positions, have been awarded NIH or other research grants or are continuing with research training. The Program especially seeks to recruit trainees from underrepresented minorities as well as disabled and disadvantaged individuals.

Public Health Relevance

The Geographic Medicine and Infectious Disease Training Program will educate the next generation of scientists charged with developing strategies to treat and control infections of global significance, particularly TB, AIDS, malaria, antimicrobial drug resistance, worm diseases, and emerging infections that may be introduced or spread in the United States.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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Microbiology and Infectious Diseases B Subcommittee (MID)
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Mcsweegan, Edward
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Case Western Reserve University
Internal Medicine/Medicine
Schools of Medicine
United States
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