To address the severe shortage of academic pediatric endocrinologists, this Training Program will take advantage of the important new opportunities for advancing diabetes and endocrine research in children provided by such recent scientific advances as the Human Genome Project, islet transplantation and biomechanical and bio-engineered islets, and the NIH roadmap plans to transform GCRC programs for patient-oriented research into Clinical Translational Science Awards. The Program will support Trainees during up to 2 years of research training at the fellowship level. The Training faculty includes 34 scientific mentors from the Children's Hospital and the UPenn School of Medicine who have outstanding credentials and active funded research programs and well-established training records. These mentors will supervise Trainees in basic laboratory research and/or patient-oriented and translational research projects related to diabetes and endocrine disorders in children. Research opportunities will include several areas of basic research (?-Cell Function, Hormone Action, Mechanisms of Disease, Endocrine Physiology, and transcriptional Regulation). Patient-oriented research opportunities will include Translational Research, Disease Mechanisms, Pathophysiology, Diabetes Complications, Genetics, Clinical Trials, Metabolic Syndrome, Nutrition, and Epidemiology. The Program includes multiple interactions for Trainees with basic and clinical research and training in all aspects of research, including biostatistics, bioethics, molecular biology, etc. The Program is strongly supported by access to a superb range of institutional resources at Children's Hospital and UPenn, including the CHOP GCRC and the UPenn DERC. Request is made to continue support for 3 fellow slots and 2 student slots in this Program each year.
The long-term goal of this T32 Training Program renewal is to develop a new generation of pediatric endocrinologists who will be equipped to carry out innovative and scientifically rigorous patient-oriented and laboratory-based research in diabetes and endocrine disorders of children. This will address a major public health need which is the critical shortage of academic pediatric endocrinologists in diabetes and endocrinology research. This shortage has been emphasized by the American Diabetes Association, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, and the Pediatric Academic Societies.
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