The goal of our training program is to prepare physicians and pre- and post-doctoral trainees for biomedical research careers in digestive diseases by providing concentrated, structured, and well-mentored research training. The program provides training to 4 postdoctoral fellows and 1 predoctoral student, with a mix of 2-3 physician-scientists and 1-2 translational/basic research postdoctoral trainees per year. Our program offers opportunities in core research training units that reflect the clinical Centers of Excellence in the Digestive Disorder Center leveraged against the basic science strengths of the University of Pittsburgh: 1) Inflammatory Bowel Diseases;2) Neurogastroenterology and Motility;3) Pancreas, Biliary and Liver Diseases;4) GI Cancer;and 5) Clinical Epidemiology and Outcomes Research. Each of these units integrates the scientific disciplines of genetics, immunology, neuroscience, molecular and cellular biology, and epidemiology. The training faculty all have R01 or equivalent funding, excellent training records, productive collaborations, and a dedication to understanding the pathophysiology of digestive diseases. Together they form a complementary and well-integrated entity dedicated to research training and investigations in gastroenterology, hepatology, pancreatic, and nutritional disorders, with research foci ranging from small molecules to large patient cohorts. Trainees develop a research project under the close supervision of a faculty trainer and are monitored by a mentoring committee as well as by the program Executive Committee. Didactic lectures, research seminars, journal clubs, formal course work, and attendance at scientific meetings supplement this intensively structured research experience. Predoctoral trainees prepare and submit F30 or F31 applications and graduate ready to compete for individual F32 fellowship support. Postdoctoral graduates will be prepared to compete for independent funding (F32, K, R) and entry-level faculty positions in academic medicine. Clinical fellows trainees leave the program with strong core research skills and data and publications with which to launch their careers. Basic science trainees take with them the experience of working with clinicians on clinically driven questions that serve as the foundation for their own translational research program. Program graduates, including some that now serve as faculty on this award for which we seek renewal, have indeed attained independent academic positions and secured career development and research project grant funding to support their own programs of study.

Public Health Relevance

The Digestive Diseases Training Program prepares physicians and pre- and post-doctoral trainees to conduct research in digestive diseases. Central themes include: 1) Inflammatory Bowel Diseases;2) Neurogastroenterology and Motility;3) Pancreas, Biliary and Liver Diseases;4) GI Cancer;and 5) Clinical Epidemiology and Outcomes Research. Each of these clinical themes integrates the scientific disciplines of genetics, immunology, neuroscience, molecular and cellular biology, and epidemiology. The training faculty all have research funding, excellent training records, productive collaborations, and a dedication to understanding the pathophysiology of digestive diseases. Past trainees from our program have become successful physician-scientists and translational scientists at top universities.

Agency
National Institute of Health (NIH)
Institute
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
Type
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
Project #
2T32DK063922-11
Application #
8474331
Study Section
Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolic Diseases B Subcommittee (DDK)
Program Officer
Densmore, Christine L
Project Start
2003-07-01
Project End
2018-06-30
Budget Start
2013-07-01
Budget End
2014-06-30
Support Year
11
Fiscal Year
2013
Total Cost
$118,230
Indirect Cost
$11,246
Name
University of Pittsburgh
Department
Internal Medicine/Medicine
Type
Schools of Medicine
DUNS #
004514360
City
Pittsburgh
State
PA
Country
United States
Zip Code
15213
Rogal, Shari S; Bielefeldt, Klaus; Wasan, Ajay D et al. (2015) Fibromyalgia symptoms and cirrhosis. Dig Dis Sci 60:1482-9
Conti, Heather R; Peterson, Alanna C; Brane, Lucas et al. (2014) Oral-resident natural Th17 cells and ?? T cells control opportunistic Candida albicans infections. J Exp Med 211:2075-84
DeBerry, Jennifer J; Schwartz, Erica S; Davis, Brian M (2014) TRPA1 mediates bladder hyperalgesia in a mouse model of cystitis. Pain 155:1280-7
LaRusch, Jessica; Jung, Jinsei; General, Ignacio J et al. (2014) Mechanisms of CFTR functional variants that impair regulated bicarbonate permeation and increase risk for pancreatitis but not for cystic fibrosis. PLoS Genet 10:e1004376
Bishu, Shrinivas; Su, Ee Wern; Wilkerson, Erich R et al. (2014) Rheumatoid arthritis patients exhibit impaired Candida albicans-specific Th17 responses. Arthritis Res Ther 16:R50
Stopczynski, Rachelle E; Normolle, Daniel P; Hartman, Douglas J et al. (2014) Neuroplastic changes occur early in the development of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma. Cancer Res 74:1718-27
Deberry, Jennifer J; Bielefeldt, Klaus; Davis, Brian M et al. (2014) Abdominal pain and the neurotrophic system in ulcerative colitis. Inflamm Bowel Dis 20:2330-9
Bishu, Shrinivas; HernĂ¡ndez-Santos, Nydiaris; Simpson-Abelson, Michelle R et al. (2014) The adaptor CARD9 is required for adaptive but not innate immunity to oral mucosal Candida albicans infections. Infect Immun 82:1173-80
Rogal, Shari S; Winger, Daniel; Bielefeldt, Klaus et al. (2013) Healthcare utilization in chronic liver disease: the importance of pain and prescription opioid use. Liver Int 33:1497-503
Salerno, K M; Jing, X; Diges, C M et al. (2013) TRAF family member-associated NF-kappa B activator (TANK) expression increases in injured sensory neurons and is transcriptionally regulated by Sox11. Neuroscience 231:28-37

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