The new Translational Neuroscience Training for Clinicians (TNT-C) postdoctoral fellowship will address a pressing need in the psychiatry research workforce: strengthening the pipeline for clinically trained individuals to enter into translational neuroscience research careers. We are well positioned to address this important gap, with access to both an exceptionally talented pool of trainees from outstanding psychiatry residency and psychology internship programs, and to an unparalleled network of basic, translational, and clinical investigators across Harvard and its affiliates. Program faculty members are seasoned investigators and mentors based at the MGH Department of Psychiatry or the Broad Institute, and each has independent funding as part of a multidisciplinary research portfolio. Two new trainees, either psychiatrists or psychologists who have recently completed their clinical training, will enter the program each year, and will receive a maximum of three years of support. Trainees will receive cross- disciplinary mentorship that spans two of four research ?hubs,? consisting of (1) the numerous clinical research programs within the MGH Department of Psychiatry, (2) the Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging, (3) the MGH Psychiatric and Neurodevelopmental Genetics Unit, and (4) the Stanley Center of the Broad Institute. Leveraging vast datasets from across these programs, trainees will develop mentored research projects that bridge the domains of clinical research, brain imaging, genomics, animal models, and cell/molecular biology. They will receive specialized didactic training that covers each of these domains as well as general issues in translational research (e.g., biostatistics, ethics, scientific writing, career planning) in preparation for career development awards or other independent funding applications to be submitted toward the end of the fellowship period. Our trainees will therefore enter the fellowship period with a deep, first-hand knowledge of unmet clinical needs in psychiatry; they will graduate with an arsenal of cutting-edge tools to address these needs through collaborative brain research.
Psychiatric disorders contribute disproportionally to the nation's health care burden. Clinicians emerging from psychiatry and psychology training programs are deeply familiar with unmet mental health care needs, and in the setting of recent advances in genetics, brain imaging, and other areas of neuroscience, they have a potentially historic opportunity to develop new interventions that are informed by brain biology. The proposed postdoctoral training program will provide talented early career clinicians with world-class training in cutting-edge neuroscience tools and methods in preparation for independent research careers.