The current generation of tumor biologists and oncologists is quite knowledgeable about the molecular-genetic underpinnings of neoplastic diseases, but has a more limited understanding of solid tumors as aberrant organ systems. Currently, our program is the leading training program where basic scientists and clinicians are trained in integrative tumor pathophysiology. We have attracted and will continue to recruit outstanding Ph.D., M.D., and M.D.-Ph.D. trainees who are seeking to acquire the necessary knowledge base and research experience for an academic career in the integrative biology of tumors. As in the past, the trainees will be selected from a large applicant pool on the basis of prior academic and research achievements and evidence of a strong commitment to an academic career. The training period will be up to three years. The mentors of our program are chosen from our faculty of well-established basic and clinical investigators whose expertise and scientific disciplines provide a broad spectrum of activities, including molecular and cellular biology of cancer, tumor physiology, tumor immunology, pharmacology, molecular imaging, and clinical investigation. The program emphasizes interdisciplinary approaches, bench-to-bedside translation, bedside to bench discovery, and long-term career development in the area of integrative pathophysiology of tumors. These goals are achieved by (a) close mentorship by at least two faculty members for each research trainee;(b) well-coordinated and broadly-based didactic sessions;and (c) careful monitoring and career planning by the Program Director in collaboration with the mentor(s). The senior faculty members have a distinguished record of and commitment to mentoring fellows and trainees, and independent research support from NCI and other sources. A number of accomplished and highly promising junior faculty assist in the supervision of the trainees. The education of each participant is tailored to his/her needs. However, our program also contains a core educational component in the form of formal didactic courses that provide generous exposure to the full range of research approaches available from its faculty and designed to prepare the trainees for independent research careers. An active minority outreach program, already in place, has led to recruitment of three minority fellows as well as eight women in our program. Our emphasis on the integration of knowledge in tumor pathophysiology and its translation from bench to bedside and back is compatible with Harvard/MGH's tradition of commitment to these issues as well as timely because of the alarming paucity of scientists/physicians trained in the integrative pathophysiology of tumors.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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Study Section
Subcommittee G - Education (NCI)
Program Officer
Damico, Mark W
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Massachusetts General Hospital
United States
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