The objective of this program is to train physician-scientists in basic and translational biomedical research focusing on the pathogenesis of infectious diseases. The training program will use the resources of 3 allied institutions, co-located on the east side of Manhattan: Weill Cornell Medical College, The Rockefeller University and Sloan-Kettering Cancer Institute. The program's faculty are well-funded scientists with independent research support who are committed to research and training. They are complemented by 3 international collaborators from Brazil and Haiti. The faculty share the view that the physician-scientist truly is an endangered species and are committed to address this issue by establishing long-term mentoring relationships with postdoctoral trainees. The broad areas of research training are: immunology, malaria, mycobacteriology, virology, and translational/clinical research, including infectious diseases of global importance. Trainees and mentors will develop an individual development plan (IDP) that can include, for example, additional formal courses in the Weill Cornell Graduate School (e.g. immunology, molecular biology) or enrollment in a K30 Master in Clinical Investigation program. During the funding period (1999-2014), 36 trainees were appointed and 30 completed their training (6 continue in the program). Fifteen (50%) received NIH K Awards and the sixteenth received an outstanding priority score and is reapplying. Research subject areas included: drug-resistant bacteria, HCV, HIV, KSV-HHV8, malaria, schistosomiasis, and tuberculosis. A total of 80% now have appointments at academic institutions and over 80% currently are conducting research. Nineteen (53%) of T32 trainees were women, 7 (19%) were racial/ethnic minorities, and 2 were from disadvantaged backgrounds. The program will continue to recruit physicians who have completed their clinical training (medicine, pediatrics, pathology) and are seeking academic investigative careers. This training grant will provide developing physician- scientists with the opportunity to make the transition from clinical training to research. We request to continue with 6 training slots a year (one designated for a trainee interested in international infectious diseases) for a training period of 2-3 years.
This training program will provide physician-scientists with the mentoring and skills needed to embark on successful careers conducting research in infectious diseases of public health importance in the United States and worldwide. The training will focus on HIV, malaria and tuberculosis and other diseases of global importance.
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