This is an application for renewal of grant T32-MH15144, Research Training: Affective and Related Disorders, which has been funded continuously since 1978. The primary goal of this proposal is to train postdoctoral (MD, MD/PhD, and PhD) fellows for careers as independent researchers in Affective, Anxiety and Related Disorders. An intensive three-year program is outlined in which fellows will learn how to identify key research questions, formulate hypotheses, and design and execute experiments that effectively test those hypotheses. In the course of training, fellows will acquire a range of skills relevant to research methodology, including expertise in experimental design and statistical analysis relevant to basic, translational and clinical research programs. Graduating fellows will be able to present clearly an entire project in both written and oral form as evidenced by publications and presentations. The success of the training program is reflected in both the accomplishments of the trainees and in the diversity of the fellows. In the past 10 years, 37 fellows have been selected to enter the training program; 38% female, 14% minorities, 46% MDs, 33% MD/PhDs and 21% PhDs. The rate of recruitment of minorities over the last 5 years has increased to 23% of fellows. Prospective fellows apply specifically to this program and the competition for training slots remains intense;51% of the fellows have been recruited from the from the Columbia Psychiatry Residency program. The graduation rate is 100% over the last 10 years (27/27). Currently, there are eight fellows: one third-year, 3 second-year, and 4 in the first year of training;two fellows have been accepted to begin on 7/1/08, making a total of 37 fellows entering the program. Of the 27 fellows who have graduated the program, 17 (63%) have received K awards and three K award submissions are presently under review from current fellows. Six graduates (21%) have already received RO1s, and several others have applications pending. In total, 20 (74%) of graduates have received substantial independent funding including R01s, K awards, R03 awards, NARSAD awards and grants from the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, and other funding agencies. Of the 27 fellows who graduated the program, 22 (81%) are in full-time academic research positions. No training program can maintain a successful track record if it remains stagnant. This submission describes significant developments in the educational philosophy and training plan for this T-32. In particular, training in translational research has been markedly strengthened by enhancement of the didactic teaching program, and through strategically adding faculty mentors in this area. The greatest strengths of this training program have always been Columbia's faculty and the research environment within the Department of Psychiatry and beyond. This remains the case today and the core of the training program has been strengthened by the changes that are fully described in the training plan.

Public Health Relevance


National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZMH1-ERB-C (01))
Program Officer
Wynne, Debra K
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Columbia University (N.Y.)
Schools of Medicine
New York
United States
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