This is an application for renewal of the T32, "Research Training in Mood and Anxiety Disorders: From Animal Models to Patients", that has been funded continuously since 1978. 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, 30 fellows have been selected to enter the training program;47% female, 13% minorities, 43% MDs, 20% MD/PhDs and 33% PhDs. The graduation rate of the fellowship is 100% over the last 10 years (23/23;the remaining 7 fellows are still in the program). Currently, there are 7 fellows: 1 fourth-year, 3 second-year, and 3 in the first year of training;two fellows have been accepted to begin on 7/1/13, making a total of 32 fellows that will have been supported by the T32 in the last 10 years. Of the 23 fellows who have graduated the program in the last 10 years, 74% have received K awards (one received the equivalent award in France where he went to work after graduation);2 current fellows have a K-award under review. Of the 4 minority fellows in the last 10 years, three graduated (all were MD/PhDs) and all three received K awards. The one who graduated more than five years ago has also received an R01. The fourth minority fellow is graduating this year and has a K award under review. Of the 16 fellows who graduated 4-10 years ago (fellows with K awards optimally apply for an R series grant by the fourth year of the K), 45% (7) have applied for an R series award and 31% (5) have received an R grant;2 more graduates have grants under review. Of the 23 graduates in the past 10 years, 78% are in full-time academic research positions. In the last submission of this T32, the committee concluded: "The review committee agreed that the existing postdoctoral training program has been excellent, succeeding in its efforts to train fellows and prepare them for research careers in affective, anxiety, and related mental disorders, and the current renewal application described a program that will continue to produce outstanding mental health researchers." That submission described a training plan that strengthened the opportunities in translational research by enhancement of the didactic teaching program and strategic addition of mentors. To further improve the training program we have taken substantive steps by adding faculty and revising the didactics. We have also developed a program to recruit to the Columbia Psychiatric Residency MD/PhDs focused on neuroscience research. This program provides substantial research time and funding during the residency;residents commit to further research training after residency completion. This program provides a very strong pipeline of M.D./Ph.D. physician-scientists for this T32 fellowship. Another development that will enhance recruitment for both this T32 and the residency is Columbia's new neuroscience building scheduled to open in 2016. This building will house approximately 65 neuroscience research labs, 20 of which will be incremental hires. Thus the training and job opportunities after graduation for fellows will be significantly increased in the near future.

Public Health Relevance

The goal of this program 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. Fellows will acquire skills necessary to do research including expertise in experimental design and statistical analysis relevant to basic, translationa and clinical research programs, understanding the administrative organization of a successful research enterprise, collaboration with other researchers, and how to write grants and obtain funding through federal grants, private foundations and other sources.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZMH1)
Program Officer
Chavez, Mark
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Columbia University (N.Y.)
Schools of Medicine
New York
United States
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