This is a competing continuation to support five post-doctoral positions to provide rigorous research training for pulmonary physicians at the fellowship level and Ph.D. recipients with interests in lung disease. The ultimate goal is to develop pulmonary scientists in either basic or clinical research who can successfully continue their careers in academics or the pharmaceutical industry. After completion of clinical or Ph.D. training, all trainees begin a two year (minimum) period of virtually uninterrupted time for research training. One of two tracks can be chosen. For those choosing a basic science pathway, the key training activity will be mentored time in a basic research laboratory, supplemented by attendance at research conferences and seminars and a variety of course work. For those choosing the translational pathway, the key training activity will be mentored time conducting a clinical research project coupled with a series of classes focused on gaining clinical trials skills. Applicants will be closely "tethered" to a basic science lab, although they will not be required to complete a laboratory project. Training will be supplemented by attendance at research conferences and seminars. Select trainees will be provided with a third year of research training. All trainees selected for this training grant are assigned a mentoring committee, similar to a graduate student thesis committee that carefully tracks each trainee's progress throughout their research training and transition to faculty status or other research job opportunities. The program will continue to foster broad multidisciplinary approaches to research with strong ties to trainers outside of the Pulmonary Division, especially at the Institute for Environmental Medicine, Children's Hospital, and the Wistar Institute. Changes in this renewal application are a request for one additional position, addition of selected faculty with unique training expertise, an enlargement of the applicant pool by encouraging more Ph.D. researchers to apply, and a revision of the curriculum for the translational/patient- oriented research track. Continued efforts to increase minority recruitment are also planned.
Lung diseases are an important human health problem. The key to developing new ways to diagnose and treat these diseases is to understand what causes them and how the body's immune system reacts to lung damage. This program will train physician-scientists and basic Ph.D. scientists to in the rationale and basic methods of studying lung diseases from the cellular to clinical level.
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