This revised proposal requests renewal of support for a postdoctoral training program at the NCI designated Basic Cancer Center of the Salk Institute for Biological Studies. This program provides advanced training in research to postdoctoral scientists pursuing careers in basic and translational research related to cancer. Major activities include molecular, cell and developmental biology research within the three Cancer Center Programs: Metabolism and Cancer, Mouse Models and Cancer Stem Cells, and Growth Control and Genomic Stability. The Cancer Center occupies 97,000 sq. ft. of laboratory space and includes 32 faculty members, 20 of who are members of the training faculty. Currently there are 162 postdoctoral and 31 predoctoral trainees in the Cancer Center. Trainees devote 100% of their time to research. Trainees in the program are required to participate in a variety of special activities designed to enhance their knowledge of cancer biology and therapeutic applications of basic research, and provided to prepare researchers for a successful independent career. These include symposium organization and the Cancer Center Symposium, grant writing tutorials, clinical round participation, emerging technology training, and the Cancer Biology Course. These activities are designed to significantly augment the cancer relevance and focus of the individual laboratory training experience. This program will support six trainees. The trainees will hold Ph.D. and/or M.D. degrees, and will be chosen on the basis of the quality and cancer relevance of research proposals they submit. The average duration of training will be three years, as at present. Upon completion of training the trainees will be fully qualified to conduct independent research in molecular and cellular biology related to cancer.
The Cancer Center of the Salk Institute for Biological Studies provides a rich environment for postdoctoral research training for qualified candidates with the Ph.D. and/or M.D. degrees. Trainees are prepared for careers as independent research investigators through firsthand experience designing and performing cutting edge research in basic and translational studies in cancer biology. The Cancer Center Training Program also provides courses, seminars, tutorials and a forum for research discussions to enhance this training experience.
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