The UW Transplant Research Training Program represents an essential funding mechanism for post- doctoral trainees and residents at our own institution and nationwide. The overall goal of the ?UW Transplant Research Training Program? is to provide postdoctoral trainees who are strongly motivated toward a career in transplant related research, with a two-year, comprehensive, hypothesis-based research experience. Trainees will be exposed to a curriculum including principles of clinical trials, research design, management, ethics and data analysis. The training program will foster the development of knowledge, skills, professional attitudes, and experience required for successful academic careers. The program will maintain two trainees per year for a two-year training experience (accepting two new trainees each year). Our trainer pool includes a total of 12 faculty, representing six departments, including Cell and Regenerative Medicine, Medical Microbiology and Immunology, Medicine, Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Pediatrics, and Surgery. Trainers have been selected based on extramural research support, prior mentoring experience, relevance of research goals to the training program, and already existing collaborations in the pursuit of translational research. Collectively, they have mentored over 115 post-doctoral trainees over the past 10 years including both MDs and PhDs. The specific objectives of this program are: (A) to provide training in the conduct of basic, translational and clinical transplant research focused on improving human health through participation in an individual and tailored didactic and mentoring program, and (B) to develop MD and PhD post-doctoral trainees as skilled team-oriented scientists with an emphasis on transplant research. The three areas of focus chosen for the program encompass the major research initiatives in transplant research at University of Wisconsin: i.) Immunobiology/ Immune Regulation, ii) Cellular Therapies/Regenerative Medicine, and iii) Translational research via large animal models. The strengths of the program include the breadth of funded research covering basic cellular in vitro projects, murine models, primates and human studies; an experienced trainer pool; collaboration with the UW Institute for Clinical and Translational Research (ICTR) funded by a CTSA; and a training model that encourages interactions and cross-training between clinicians and scientists. Additionally this program boasts individualized training plans, extensive institutional resources to enhance training, an experienced administrative infrastructure to assist with management of the program, a plan to promote diversity by recruiting and retaining both women and minorities, and a comprehensive plan for training in the responsible conduct of research. The administrative structure includes an Executive Committee, an External Advisory Board, a Diversity Advisory Committee, as well as program support and coordination utilizing an existing training grant program administrator within the Department of Surgery.

Public Health Relevance

High impact medical science today requires the dynamic assembly of multidisciplinary teams for researchers comprised of basic and physician-scientists working in a team-oriented fashion. Our proposed training paradigm recognizes these realities and is organized to develop researchers skilled in collaborative scientific endeavors and a team-oriented approach to scientific achievement in the field of transplantation. It also recognizes the need for successful team-science leaders to inspire collaborations and a unified focus on the ultimate goal of clinical application. The University of Wisconsin Transplant Research Training Program will provide MD and PhD trainees with a breadth of transplant research-specific knowledge and prepare them for successful careers as academic scientists. Their research discoveries will impact the care and long-term outcomes for transplant patients

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 Wisconsin Madison
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