Despite advances in public health and medical therapeutics, infectious diseases continue to represent the leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide which extracts a considerable financial and societal toll even in developed countries due to factors such as emerging pathogens, AIDS or other immunocompromising conditions, and antimicrobial resistance. Between 1980 and 1992, the U.S. death rate from infectious diseases, excluding HIV/AIDS, rose by 22%. Infectious diseases are presently the third leading cause of death in the U.S. and the leading cause worldwide. Familiar bacterial pathogens such as Salmonella and Mycobacterium tuberculosis continue to contribute to the deaths of millions of people each year, while other pathogens such as Escherichia coli 0157:H7 and community-acquired Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus have emerged as new threats. The recent specter of bioterrorism has only served to heighten concern that a better understanding of the pathogenesis of infection is needed. The training of new scientists who can elucidate basic mechanisms of microbial pathogenesis will be critical for the formulation of improved strategies to prevent, diagnose and treat infectious diseases. This application for renewed support of a Training Program in Bacterial Pathogenesis centers around an established and highly interactive interdisciplinary research community and the University of Washington. The goal of the program is to provide comprehensive interdisciplinary training and mentorship for pre- and post-doctoral trainees who seek to understand fundamental cellular and molecular mechanisms of the interactions between bacterial pathogens and their hosts. This training will ultimately allow them to obtain new scientific insights as independent investigators that can lead to novel approaches for the prevention and management of infectious diseases.
This is a program to provide research training to scientists who study bacterial infections such as typhoid and tuberculosis. An increased understanding of these conditions will be essential for the development of improved strategies for the prevention and treatment of human infections.
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