The training program in gastroenterology &hepatology at the University of Colorado Denver is committed to preparing highly motivated post-doctoral candidates for successful careers in academic gastroenterology. The purpose of this renewal application is to sustain and expand this program's record of scientific work and accomplishments of the last 34 years. The positive structural changes this program has undergone since the last review have strongly enhanced the research environment and diverse opportunities available to prospective trainees. These include the recruitment of 16 additional faculty members to the division, establishment of the Mucosal Inflammation program (MIP), a move to our new state of the art campus, formation of a divisional research administration group, establishment of a women's health practice, and expansion and strengthening of collaborative ties with other disciplines. Future growth initiatives include active participation in a planned obesity/nutrition center and expansion of both the women's health practice and the MIP. Programmatic improvements since the last review include the formation of a Research and Career Development Committee (RCDC) and a Fellowship Mentorship Monitoring Committee. Both committees are designed and were implemented to improve the quality, diversity and frequency of mentoring from faculty members, as well as to track trainee progress and identify any pitfalls, obstacles, or resource deficits. Specific goals of this project continue to be: 1) Provide a diverse research environment complete with multi-disciplinary resources and mentorship 2) Produce the next generation of academic gastroenterologists with a focus on understanding molecular, physiologic, and immunological processes of gastrointestinal and liver diseases that broadly affect the public. 3) Implementation a successful system to recruit, train, mentor, foster careers, and maintain collaborative relationships with successful academic physicians and scientists.
Pervasive public health concerns specific to gastroenterology and liver diseases include: hepatitis, inflammatory bowel disease, and obesity, among others. The cutting-edge and collaborative research environment this project provides for young investigators is key to finding future clinical solutions for these public health concerns.
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