In the present application, we seek renewed support for the Immunology Research Training Program at the University of California, Irvine (UCI). The objective of the Immunology Research Training Program is to train scientists to study the role of immune system in infection, autoimmunity, neuro-inflammation and cancer. These research areas are addressed by the 20 mentors and 3 junior preceptors of the UCI Institute for Immunology (IFI), which, under the leadership of Dr. Eric Pearlman, will provide the administrative and academic core for this training program. The IFI faculty will capitalize on the strengths of the existing Cellular and Molecular Biosciences (CMB) a n d n e u r o s c i e n c e u m b r e l l a graduate programs. The strengths of the UCI Immunology Research Training Program include: 1) The highly structured training program and scientifically strong environment at UCI IFI; 2) The leadership and experience of the Program Director/PI, Dr. Eric Pearlman, former director of the NIH T32-supported Visual Sciences Program at Case Western Reserve University; 3) the Preceptors/Mentors, who are established investigators in wide-ranging areas of immunology; 4) the existing pool of predoctoral trainees, recruited from top-tier institutions, and the success of the Immunology Research Training Program in its first four years of existence in recruiting and attracting individuals from diverse populations; 5) The strong training record of UCI Immunology Research Training Program in its 10 years of existence, during which 1 9 pre-doctoral trainees and 2 postdoctoral trainees were supported and have been highly productive. For this third period of support (2016-2020), funding is requested for 4 pre-docs and 2 post-doctoral slots. Importantly, the Graduate Division at UCI will also provide 1 additional slot upon funding of this application; thus, there is potential for 5 pre-doctoral students to be supported for immunology research. The existing strengths in immunology at UCI will be embellished and provide career opportunities for trainees in academia and industry.

Public Health Relevance

There is an increased appreciation that in addition to infection, immune responses have a critical role in development and severity of cancer and neurodegenerative diseases. The Immunology Research Training Program at UCI seeks to train and develop the next generation of outstanding immunologists to work on these areas. Trainees will be at the forefront of discovery and application of the immune system to ameliorate human disease.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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Allergy, Immunology, and Transplantation Research Committee (AITC)
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Gondre-Lewis, Timothy A
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University of California Irvine
Schools of Arts and Sciences
United States
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