The University of Washington Department of Biostatistics, with the collaboration of faculty from the Departments of Computer Sciences, Epidemiology, Genome Sciences, Medicine, Pathology, Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, and Statistics proposes to train biostatisticians and life scientists to develop and apply quantitative methods to the environmental health sciences in a new program "Biostatistics, Epidemiologic and Bioinfomatic Training in the Environmental Health Sciences." The proposed Training Program has two pathways: one population-based and one laboratory-based. The population-based pathway will emphasize statistical methods in environmental epidemiology to elucidate the etiologies of environmentally-related diseases. The laboratory-based pathway will focus on the interpretation of modern genomic data and how they may be exploited to unravel the biological bases of these diseases. Both pathways will foster a multidisciplinary, collaborative and interdisciplinary training environment that 1) includes quantitative and applied training objectives, 2) assigns a quantitative and a scientific mentor to each trainee, 3) involves each trainee in a project that leads to expertise in multiple disciplines necessary to advance environmental health science research, 4) recruits trainees with differing backgrounds to enhance cross-training, and 5) targets training activities to enhance training goals. The investigators propose a trainee recruitment strategy that will start with four pre-doctoral and two postdoctoral trainees and build to eight pre-doctoral and four post-doctoral trainees in year five. Trainees will be recruited from multiple disciplines and each will have an individualized Training Program unified under the common theme of developing quantitative skills for application to the environmental health sciences. The pre-doctoral trainees will pursue Ph.D. degrees in biostatistics, environmental health, epidemiology, or genome sciences, whereas the postdoctoral trainees will be eligible to seek MPH or MS degrees in an appropriate discipline. These trainees will be mentored by an outstanding group of 23 faculty drawn from the collaborating departments, all of whom have substantial training and research records. The preceptors will direct the trainee's research as well as contribute to teaching their courses and providing training in the ethical conduct of research and the management of laboratory and population studies. BACKGROUND There have been substantive changes to the application since the initial submission. The description of the pre-doctoral program has been expanded to provide specific detail on the curriculum. Examples have been provided of the dual mentoring program and how it leads to program integration. The dual mentorship arrangement has been modified so that at least one of the mentors has current NIEHS funding. The requirement that trainees sign a statement of intent to pursue environmental health science training has been deleted. Details have been provided on how the trainees will be assigned to mentors. The time that trainees will spend in research in their initial years has been clarified and justified. There has been clarification given about how mentors can been changed as a trainee's research topic is chosen. An evaluation form has been provided for assessing a trainee's presentation skills. Dr. Weir's role as Associate Director has been re-structured. The tracking system of alumni of the program has been modified to capture environmental health science activities. Explanation has been provided about the use of T32 support for the first 3 years of training. The role of the dual mentors on the same research project has been clarified. The proposed number of trainees to be supported has been reduced to 4 pre-doctoral and 2 postdoctoral in the initial year, ramping up to 8 pre-doctoral and 4 postdoctoral by year 5.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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Study Section
Environmental Health Sciences Review Committee (EHS)
Program Officer
Shreffler, Carol K
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University of Washington
Biostatistics & Other Math Sci
Schools of Public Health
United States
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