The purpose of this program is to provide promising young scientists with mentor-based training in a dynamic, highly collaborative and interactive environment to promote their development as independent investigators engaged in alcohol research. Highly qualified candidates are competitively selected from a large applicant pool recruited through advertisements in addiction- and neuroscience-related societies and publications, referrals from established colleagues in the field of alcohol research, and from letters of inquiry resulting from the Training Faculty?s publications and public presentations. Mechanisms are in place to encourage applications from underrepresented groups, to foster diversity in the training program and the field of addiction research. A rigorous training program has been established to develop trainees? skills in (i) identifying important, relevant and testable hypotheses, (ii) experimental design and conduct, (iii) data analysis and interpretation, and (iv) scientific communication through written and oral presentation. Emphasis is placed on career development, and trainees complete an Individual Development Plan (IDP) upon admission to the program to generate trainee-mentor discussions of career plans and goals, strategies and timelines for achieving these goals, and ways in which these goals may have changed during the training period. Trainees are encouraged to engage in numerous workshops and resources available at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) on effective CV development, networking, job applications and interviewing techniques. In addition, mentors and Program Faculty actively engage trainees in discussions of each of these skills on an ongoing basis. Throughout their tenure in the program, trainees are educated in the responsible conduct of research, and this occurs via courses offered through the TSRI Career and Postdoctoral Services Office, the annual Neuropsychopharmacology of Addiction course taught by the Program Faculty, and through day-to-day input from mentors and Program Faculty regarding ethical practices in laboratory research. The highly collaborative group of 16 Program Faculty members is characterized by strong, well-funded programs in alcohol and addiction research incorporating multidisciplinary experimental approaches combining biochemical, morphological, physiological, and behavioral techniques. This is a translational training program associated with the longstanding TSRI P60 Alcohol Research Center, and trainees can engage in studies spanning the molecular and cellular domains, through investigations of neurobiological mechanism in whole animals, and clinical studies in humans on the vulnerability to alcoholism, and the development of therapeutics for this prevalent disorder. The training program has functioned continuously since 1979 under three successive Program Directors, and has a consistent record of preparing outstanding young investigators for a rapid transition to independent and impactful careers in alcohol research and addiction neuroscience.

Public Health Relevance

This is a training program to train promising young scientists at the postdoctoral level (post Ph.D.) in molecular, cellular, behavioral and clinical neuropsychopharmacology. Trainees participate in scientific project development, seminars from visiting scientists, a course in neuropsychopharmacology, a course in ethical conduct of research, and training in career development for pathways to independence. Established procedures for recruitment, evaluation and career development are in place. !

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZAA1)
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Egli, Mark
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Scripps Research Institute
La Jolla
United States
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