The proposed R25-NIDCR Research Education in Genomics Training Program with Diversity Action Plan (DAP) is to provide summer research experience in Genomic Sciences, Medicine and Society in dental, oral and craniofacial areas with a special emphasis on analysis of next generation sequences (NGS) for 20 undergraduate students from diverse backgrounds, specifically students from racial and ethnic groups underrepresented in biomedical research, with disabilities, and from disadvantaged backgrounds. NGS has revolutionized biosciences and biomedical research and is on the verge of transforming clinical practice. It is critical to train a new and diverse generation of biological and quantitative dentist scientists and oral health researchers for mining this vast amount of public data in order to address current challenges to public health. Data science has transformed the field of medical genomics and is likely to permeate all aspects of dentistry from risk management to the bedside through personalized treatment decisions on dental, oral and craniofacial diseases. We anticipate a critical need for dental researchers with strong skills in big data analysis, with particular emphasis on genomics. This need is further emphasized in the requirements of quantitative analysis skills in biosciences graduate programs, DDS/PhD programs (T32, T90/R90), Post-DDS Residency/PhD program (K12) programs all the way to the practice of dentistry. To address the need in dental, oral and craniofacial science for researchers and practitioners from diverse backgrounds with strong data science skills, we will establish the ?Bruins-In-Genomics in Dental, Oral and Craniofacial Research Training Program (BIG DOC)?. This program will leverage the infrastructure of the existing, highly successful UCLA ?Bruins-In-Genomics (BIG)? Summer Undergraduate Research Program (BIG Summer)? which is hosted by the Institute for Quantitative and Computational Biosciences (QCB) at UCLA. BIG Summer consists of a combination of practical workshop tutorials that focus on NGS data analysis skills, and a hands-on research experience with UCLA faculty in genomic sciences, medicine and society. The proposed R25-NIDCR BIG DOC program will fund 20 students to join the existing BIG Summer program and partner with faculty with a research focus in dental, oral and craniofacial genomics. The students will be quantitative or biosciences majors entering their junior and senior years. We expect that for many of our participants, this research experience will serve as a launching point for their research careers and career development in dental, oral and craniofacial research. Program recruitment will emphasize academic excellence, enthusiasm, diversity and underrepresented minorities.
High-throughput genomic technologies are increasingly being used in dental, oral and craniofacial research from discovery to clinical decision making, raising an enormous need for quantitative genomics expertise. The proposed ?Bruins In Genomics for Dental, Oral and Craniofacial Research Training Program (BIG DOC)? aims to address this need by providing a mentored summer didactic and research experience to 20 undergraduate researchers from diverse and underrepresented minority backgrounds.