In recent years, cancer research has entered an exciting new era in which a number of highly effective, non-toxic targeted cancer therapies have been developed based on improved understanding of the molecular underpinnings of cancer. Fundamental knowledge about the biology of cancer has burgeoned, but the translation of basic science discoveries to clinical advancements is slow and inefficient. The translation of molecular insights into clinical trials requires that teams of physician and scientists with diverse training work together. The objective of the Translational Research in Oncology Training (TROT) Program is to give Trainees at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC) a solid foundation in the field of oncology research, while exposing them to the clinical care enterprise, so that they may make a vibrant link between clinical and basic research. The ultimate goal of the Program is to support the development of PhD scientists who possess the complex knowledge of their basic science discipline, but who additionally possess the ability to translate their research into clinically meaningful application. This Program will provide Trainees with the intensive training, resources, and experience necessary for them to develop successful careers in academia, government, and industry as independent translational researchers and leaders. The objective will be achieved by providing a structured learning environment where the Trainee will conduct a project under the mentorship of a successful, independent translational researcher. Didactic sessions, seminar series, and a retreat will reinforce their scientific training. Trainees will have the opportunity to observe patient interactions and procedures, and will learn about cancer diagnoses and staging through a rotation in Pathology. Each trainee will select a clinical mentor who will provide guidance, from a clinical perspective, on the Trainee's research project.
The training program for translational cancer research will provide opportunities to postdoctoral PhD trainees to learn about human oncology and pathogenesis, and work collaboratively with clinicians to advance the treatment of cancer patients. The goals are: to help basic scientists to develop a strong clinical background so that they may effectively bring discoveries from bench to bedside;and to foster interdisciplinary research and collaboration.
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