Given the severe shortfall of research scientists who are capable of conducting comprehensive studies that can translate fundamental knowledge from the bench to the clinical and the community settings for the improvement of cancer prevention and control, the purpose of this research training program is to provide integrated training in an inter-disciplinary research and teaching setting at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) Hillman Cancer Center. Trainees will be trained in understanding the role of environmental exposures and genetic and other physiological factors in the development and progression of cancer in humans. The training program involves cross-disciplinary training courses in different tracks in the Clinical Trial Research, the Translational Research, and the Population-Based Observational and Interventional Research on cancer. Trainees will work with experienced mentors in a multiple disciplinary team conducting researches from mechanistic experiments and observational studies in populations to randomized intervention studies to test the efficacy of chemo- and immuno-preventive agents on cancer protection in humans. The mentored research will provide direct research experience to trainees in study design, methodological development, implementation of research protocol, data collection, analysis and interpretation, and manuscript preparation and publication. Trainees also will learn how to translate discoveries from pre-clinical experimental and/or observational studies into randomized interventional studies for cancer prevention. The unique training of this program will train next generation of scientists who can lead the cutting-edge translational research on cancer etiology and prevention. This training program is a joint effort of 23 preceptors who are conducting active research projects all with independent research funding in University of Pittsburgh. These faculties are from the following research programs: Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention Program; Breast and Ovarian Cancer Program; Biobehavioral Oncology Program; Cancer Immunology Program; Cancer Therapeutics Program; Head & Neck Cancer Program; Lung Cancer Program; and Molecular and Cellular Cancer Biology Program at the UPMC Hillman Cancer, a top-ranked Comprehensive Cancer Center with $94 million direct research funding in 2017. Trainees will receive cutting-edge translational research training and experience. We request continuing funding to support 3 postdoctorates and one predoctorate per year for 5 years. Our recent data on applicant recruitment, retention and training experience demonstrate a relatively large pool of candidates with high academic performance. In addition, we successfully enrolled one-third trainees from the underrepresented racial and ethnical groups. The progress and success of the training program will continue to track the career development and research activities of past trainees in the 10 years post-training.

Public Health Relevance

. This training program will create a new generation of researchers superbly trained in multidisciplinary settings with a broad perspective and knowledge concerning basic, epidemiologic and clinical sciences. This new generation of scientists will be competent to undertake multiple disciplinary etiologic and preventive research that translates the discoveries in pre-clinical experimental and observational studies into randomized interventional studies for Eliminating the Suffering and Death due to Cancer, the ultimate goal set forth by NCI.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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Subcommittee I - Transistion to Independence (NCI)
Program Officer
Lim, Susan E
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University of Pittsburgh
Public Health & Prev Medicine
Schools of Public Health
United States
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