This expanded renewal application will support training in immunology and support three pre-doctoral, two post-doctoral PhD and two post-doctoral MD trainees at Baylor College of Medicine and affiliated institutions.
The specific aims of this application are 1) to recruit promising young scientists with a passion for immunology research;2) to increase access to high quality research mentors 3) to increase the desirability of a research career for physicians;and 4) to increase access to developmental mentoring functions including career development. Training is performed at two institutions, Baylor College of Medicine and the MD Anderson Cancer Center (MDACC) in Houston, Texas, with all training faculty engaged in inflammatory disease and immunology research. Since the last submission of this application, Baylor College of Medicine has undergone several substantial changes, including merging of the former Departments of Immunology and Pathology, creating a single Department of Pathology &Immunology;launching the building of its first wholly-owned medical care facility;recruiting to Baylor and Texas Children's Hospital of Drs. Peter Hotez, director of the first National School of Tropical Medicine in the United States, and Jordan Orange as Chief of Pediatric Immunology, Allergy, and Rheumatology. In response to these changes, the two prior immunology-related T32 training grants at Baylor have been merged, forming this single renewal application. David B. Corry, M.D., will direct the merged T32 and will be assisted by an external advisory board and an internal steering committee, all comprised of immunologists having MD and/or PhD backgrounds. Trainees accepted into the program will be chosen from pre-doctoral applicants primarily from the Graduate Program in Immunology and PhD and MD postdoctoral applicants from the laboratories of the program faculty. Post-doctoral fellows will also be recruited nationally. Pre-doctoral applicants will be appointed in their first year, after hey have passed their qualifying exams. Required coursework will include training in the ethical conduct of science and trainees must attend weekly journal clubs, weekly seminars given by invited speakers and will be required to present their research at a campus-wide immunology seminar. All trainees will receive guidance on how to build careers in science, regardless of their backgrounds and will be expected to attend international scientific symposia. Research advisory committees will be assembled for each trainee, which will meet at least twice per year to provide research and career guidance. Baylor and the Texas Medical Center offer an exceptional scientific training environment. This program has and will continue to strive to attract premier immunology trainees, including underrepresented minority (URM) and female applicants. The Graduate School has established itself as a national leader in recruiting and finishing URM pre-doctoral students, with approximately 20% URM students, partly through exemplary support programs. As such, this training program will continue to produce premier MD and PhD immunologists for careers in science.
Immune or inflammatory mechanisms underlie the vast majority of human diseases. Modern immunology offers the opportunity to make substantial additional improvements in human health through improved vaccines, immunosuppressive strategies, and improved methods to combat cancer. Participants in this immunology training program will receive guidance in these important areas and emerge as effective scientists who will study immune mechanisms of human disease and help to advance human health.
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