This application requests continued support for a Program that provides structured, multidisciplinary research training of at least 2 years duration to 8 MD, PhD, or MD/PhD trainees per year. Trainees who are interested in defining the molecular and cellular basis of cardiovascular diseases, developing innovative approaches for imaging the cardiovascular system, and developing novel molecular and cellular therapies are all candidates for appointment to our Program. The Program builds on a strong tradition of cardiovascular research and clinical training at the University of Washington School of Medicine and exploits recent expansions in space and faculty dedicated to cardiovascular research. Training experiences are provided in four areas of opportunity within the broader field of cardiovascular disease research: (1) Signaling and Vascular Injury;(2) Molecular and Cellular Therapies;(3) Genetics and Genomics of Cardiovascular Risk;and (4) Biomechanics, Bioengineering, and Cardiovascular Imaging. Accordingly, the Program offers research training with faculty who hold primary appointments in 10 distinct academic Departments within the University of Washington and its affiliated institutions. The faculty is highly collaborative, as evidenced by joint publications, co-mentoring of trainees, and participation in Program Project and Center grants. Training supported by this Program includes a mentored research experience under the primary direction of one of our faculty, group activities such as didactic courses and seminars, activities organized and supported by this Program including a weekly seminar series on Cardiovascular Biology, a monthly Fellows Conference that is both didactic and focused on career development, semi-annual dinner presentations, and training in the "survival skills" that are required for success as an independent investigator. Each of our trainees has a tailored training plan that is designed to broaden the trainee's scientific knowledge and provide essential skills. Individual training programs are developed by the trainee and mentor, are typically revised and expanded after review by the Program Director and Steering Committee, and are reviewed annually by the Committee. Involvement of a co-mentor from a different discipline than the primary mentor is a key feature of the Program. This Program is the major source of support for clinical fellows in Cardiology, Cardiovascular Pathology, and Vascular and Cardiothoracic Surgery who wish to acquire the skills that are necessary to carry out "basic science" investigations as independent, principal investigators. The program is also a critical source of support for trainees with Ph.D. degrees who wish to pursue training in laboratories that have a significant focus on molecular and cellular biology and genetics of the mammalian cardiovascular system and that also envision clinical application of their discoveries.
This Program supports full-time research training for individuals with doctoral degrees (MD, PhD, or both) who wish to develop careers that include significant involvement in cardiovascular research. Research training is provided in several areas including: identifying the causes of cardiovascular diseases;improving our ability to diagnose cardiovascular diseases;and enhancing our ability to treat and prevent cardiovascular diseases. The long-term goal of the Program is to train physicians and scientists who can lead these efforts.
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