The UCLA Microbial Pathogenesis Training Grant provides the foundation for an integrated research training program in the biochemistry &biology of microbial pathogens and host-pathogen interactions The program's goal is to train scientists to conduct research in microbial pathogenesis using molecular, cellular, genetic and immunological approaches Our training faculty includes 31 preceptors, 10 of whom have joined us since the last renewal A broad range of related research interests are represented, including bacteriology, parasitology, virology, mycology and the immunology of host-microbe interactions Faculty have excellent publication, funding and training records The program was first funded in 1988 Six predoctoral and 2 postdoctoral positions are currently funded and we request an increase in the number of predoctoral trainees to eight Most of our Ph D trainees are recruited through the UCLA ACCESS Program to the Molecular and Cellular Life Sciences, which provides an excellent pool of predoctoral applicants 44% of entering ACCESS students have expressed an interest in microbiology and immunology, emphasizing the need for additional predoctoral trainee slots Our faculty are also successful in attracting qualified postdoctoral fellows through a variety of channels Trainees are selected for funding on a competitive basis, after a thorough review of their academic and research accomplishments Progress is reviewed on a yearly basis and appointments are renewed yearly with a maximum of three years of support for predoctoral trainees and two years for postdoctoral trainees The training program requires the completion of coursework focused on microbial pathogenesis, annual presentation of trainee research in a seminar series attended by all trainees and training preceptors, participation in a Microbial Pathogenesis seminar series composed of external, preeminent scientists in the field and a journal club conducted by trainees Research presentations at national meetings and UCLA scientific retreats, as well as participation in a course devoted to ethics and accountability in biomedical research are required Career counseling by an advisory committee is also emphasized The focal point of our training program is excellence in research Several mechanisms to monitor and facilitate trainee progress in research and other areas is outlined Our past training efforts have been successful and continued success is anticipated following the plan outlined in this proposal

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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University of California Los Angeles
Schools of Medicine
Los Angeles
United States
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Leitsch, David; Janssen, Brian D; Kolarich, Daniel et al. (2014) Trichomonas vaginalis flavin reductase 1 and its role in metronidazole resistance. Mol Microbiol 91:198-208
Chikere, Kelechi; Webb, Nicholas E; Chou, Tom et al. (2014) Distinct HIV-1 entry phenotypes are associated with transmission, subtype specificity, and resistance to broadly neutralizing antibodies. Retrovirology 11:48
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Twu, Olivia; Johnson, Patricia J (2014) Parasite extracellular vesicles: mediators of intercellular communication. PLoS Pathog 10:e1004289
Twu, Olivia; de Miguel, Natalia; Lustig, Gila et al. (2013) Trichomonas vaginalis exosomes deliver cargo to host cells and mediate hostýýýparasite interactions. PLoS Pathog 9:e1003482

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