The goal of the program is to produce outstanding biomedical scientists who investigate the mechanisms, manifestations, prevention, and cures of lung disease. The program combines intensive training in a single area of investigation within a multidisciplinary academic environment. The training is available at both the pre-doctoral level. A PhD program may be completed in 5 years. At the postdoctoral level, qualified MD or PhD candidates complete 2 or more years of training. The program supports 14 post-doctoral trainees and 4 pre-doctoral trainees per year. A wide range of training opportunities are provided by a large interactive network of faculty supported by individual, collaborative and inter-institutional research grants. These opportunities include lung-related research in behavioral science, biomedical ethics, cellular and molecular biology, environmental science, epidemiology, health services, immunology and infection, airway biology, sleep biology and vascular biology. The close relationship between a primary mentor and co- mentors with the trainee is the core of the experience. This is supplemented by formal course work, core conferences, training in responsible research conduct, communication skills, career planning, and grant writing. Postdoctoral trainees in the clinical sciences can acquire a Masters or Doctoral. Fellows and mentors are reviewed by a committee that monitors the training and career development of fellows, and promotes mentoring skills. Doctoral students are reviewed by a thesis committee that provides both support and guidance. Since 1999, the program has trained 16 minority trainees reflecting its commitment to cultural diversity. This grant has supported 80 post-doctoral trainees: 88% took 3 or more years of research training;89% entered full-time academic positions and 74% have obtained independent research funding including 32 K-awards and 40 F32 awards indicative of the program's success.
Lung disease is a leading cause of death and disability in the United States. Despite an expanding understanding of the causes of lung disease, treatments that cure these disorders are lacking and most treatments are symptomatic or supportive. The goal of this program is to train highly qualified individuals in the research disciplines that are necessary to find better treatments for these disorders.
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