Data and technology have been instrumental in furthering our understanding of human health, including many benign urologic diseases. Studies employing next-generation sequencing technologies found evidence of bacterial and viral communities in the urine of healthy women and men, debunking the myth that ?urine is sterile.? Similarly, data has been instrumental in improving patient care. Mining of electronical medical records has uncovered associations between lower urinary tract symptoms and patient populations, identifying new opportunities and procedures to improve patient quality of life. The NIDDK-funded Loyola Urinary Education and Research Collaborative (LUEREC) has been at the forefront of research in pelvic floor disorders, harnessing data to drive discovery. Our translational research team includes surgeon scientists and basic scientists with complementary expertise in lower urinary tract disorders, microbiology, and informatics. The proposed program will engage undergraduate (rising Junior and Senior) and recent post-baccalaureate trainees in hands-on research in benign urologic diseases at Loyola University Chicago. Over 12-weeks, cohorts of 6 trainees will work closely with student, faculty, and clinical researchers in the LUEREC community. We have identified three educational aims for the proposed training program. Trainees will: ? Aim 1: Gain exposure to current research areas in benign urologic disease, ? Aim 2: Establish proficiency conducting hypothesis-driven research, and ? Aim 3: Develop skills to synthesize, interpret and present scientific research. Formal training in benign urologic disease research and data science will be blended with hands-on experience. This transdisciplinary training will provide trainees with in-demand skills for future careers in biomedicine. Trainees will work in small groups, thus facilitating peer-learning. Enrichment activities have been designed to provide trainees with exposure to research and careers in urology, as well as to graduate and medical school. The proposed program also includes several formal and informal training activities to develop the skills necessary to effectively present scientific research; each trainee will produce two written documents of his/her research over the course of the 12-week program, in addition to oral and poster presentations. Recruitment for the proposed project will be conducted at a national level, enhancing diversity of the cohort, based upon racial and ethnic background, gender, and/or financial resources. Loyola University Chicago is committed to increasing diversity in undergraduate and graduate education while delivering the premier undergraduate educational experience in Chicago. The proposed program administration is passionate about education and is recognized for their dedication to teaching and mentorship with numerous awards and honors. Through the proposed mentored research experiences, trainees will enrich their college education while gaining first-hand exposure to careers in benign urologic disease research.

Public Health Relevance

The proposed program will engage undergraduate and post-baccalaureate trainees in benign urologic disease research at Loyola University Chicago. Trainees will be introduced to research careers in the field, with an emphasis on transdisciplinary and translational approaches. Over 12-week periods, trainee cohorts will: (1) gain exposure to current research in benign urologic disease, (2) establish proficiency conducting hypothesis-driven research, and (3) develop skills to synthesize, interpret, and present scientific research.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
Education Projects (R25)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZDK1)
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Rankin, Tracy L
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Loyola University Chicago
Anatomy/Cell Biology
Schools of Medicine
United States
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