This application seeks support to develop a new postdoctoral training program, VGM: Vanderbilt Genomic Medicine Training Program, at Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC). VUMC houses a number of nationally recognized resources for genomic medicine, and this initiative represents a timely opportunity for VUMC to expand current efforts in the emerging field of genomic medicine while aligning this new program with the revised strategic plan of the NHGRI (NOT-HG-14-017). VGM will include a major focus in pharmacogenomics, precision phenotyping, medical informatics, and disease-based genomics. The program builds on decades-long strengths in critical enabling resources such as 1) BioVU, the largest biobank linking DNA samples to electronic medical records (EMRs) at a single academic institution (now >204,000 subjects), 2) Participation in three NHGRI-funded networks: the Electronic Medical Records and Genomics (eMERGE) network and eMERGE coordinating center, the Implementing Genomics in Practice (IGNITE) Network, and the Undiagnosed Disease Network (UDN), 3) The Pharmacogenomic Resource for Enhanced Decisions In Care and Treatment (PREDICT) project that embeds genetic information in patient EMRs to guide drug and dosage choices (PREDICT served as one model for the ongoing eMERGE-PGx project that implements a similar preemptive genotyping paradigm across eMERGE), 4) the Program in Personalized Therapy for Cancer that applies tumor genome sequencing to identify actionable mutations in cancers and to personalized target therapy, 5) The HIV-Pharmacogenomics program, 6) the largest Department of Biomedical Informatics in the country, with strong research, education, and support programs in clinical information technology, and 7) participation and leadership in other related efforts at NIH, including the Genotype-Tissue Expression project (GTEx) and the Pharmacogenomics Research Network (PGRN). The program has 29 highly collaborative and well-funded faculty preceptors who team up to provide both basic and clinical research training opportunities to both Ph.D.-level and M.D.-level postdoctoral fellows. Trainees will participate in rotations, internship, seminars, journal clubs, and retreats and interact with other trainees and faculty. Under Vanderbilt's Biomedical Research Education and Training (BRET) Office, the program will provide RCR training, high- standard Individual Development Plans (IDP), and the Career Development programs, thus promoting trainees to be next-generation leaders in genomic medicine. A Scientific Advisory Committee and an External Advisory Committee will be formed to provide valuable advice on VGM program development and enhancement. The program will actively seek to support those from minority groups. Our fundamental model is to enhance multidisciplinary training through a curriculum tailored for each trainee based on prior training, coupled to a unique paired-mentoring approach in which each trainee will have two preceptors, one in clinical research and one in basic research. A team science approach to problem solving is fundamental in VGM program.

Public Health Relevance

Multiple scientific advances are enabling the rapid development of genomic medicine, the new discipline that uses genomic information about an individual as part of that individual's clinical care. We propose to develop a new postdoctoral training program, 'VGM: Vanderbilt Genomic Medicine Training Program,' at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, where houses a number of nationally recognized resources for genomic medicine. VGM will provide multidisciplinary training to both M.D. and Ph.D. postdoctoral fellows in genomic research design, methods, and analytic techniques with the ability to apply these methods in a clinical setting to advance patient care.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZHG1)
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Colley, Heather
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Vanderbilt University Medical Center
United States
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