We propose to continue an interdepartmental training program for Drug Discovery Training in Age-Related Disorders - a program devoted to providing predoctoral and postdoctoral scholars with rigorous and excellence -oriented training in drug discovery, with a particular focus on age-related diseases. The program is part of the educational activities of an established and successful academic-based drug discovery program (DDP), a faculty initiated and operated interdepartmental research and training program in basic biomedical sciences. A pioneering and successful aspect that is at the foundation of the DDP is its emphasis on research training at the interface of structural biology, chemistry, and life sciences, with a strong basic science/clinical interaction. The facilitation of multidisciplinary activities enhances the understanding and diagnosis of disease processes as well as the development of fundamental knowledge and tools for intervention. The investigator-initiated research programs and cooperative interactions among internationally recognized faculty are at the heart of the DDP's rapid establishment and increasing success, thereby providing an outstanding learning environment for our trainees. The training program includes 35 basic science and clinical faculty with an established record of cooperation, collaboration, and commitment to mentoring predoctoral and postdoctoral scholars. This provides a variety of options for outstanding training in drug discovery and age-related disorders. In addition to a primary preceptor, trainees select a secondary preceptor to provide for an enhanced training experience. To promote the multidisciplinary emphasis of the program, the chosen preceptors should represent at least two of the three overall areas of program emphasis; i.e., structure, chemistry, and biology. The Program has a structured curriculum that includes an Advanced Topics in Drug Discovery course, training in Ethics, a visiting lecture series, annual symposium, and summer undergraduate research program. Trainees are also given opportunities for interaction with individuals from biotech and pharmaceutical companies through program sponsored lectures and workshops, collaborations, participation in the annual symposium and appropriate national scientific meetings. There are also opportunities for international experiences through exchange visits and formalized institutional liaisons. These program characteristics provide trainees with a firm foundation to develop their skills as independent scientists with an appreciation for multiple experimental and technical strategies to research questions, an understanding of the process of drug discovery and its implications for future health care advances, and a realistic perspective for how scientific discoveries can be translated most readily into health care applications. Our program addresses a national need and will produce outstanding scientists for the future that will be prepared to address and solve age-reIated disorders. ? ?

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Aging (NIA)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZAG1-ZIJ-5 (J1))
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Buckholtz, Neil
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Northwestern University at Chicago
Anatomy/Cell Biology
Schools of Medicine
United States
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