There is a critical need to train the next generation of translational cancer researchers in light of a new era of genomic medicine and big data. We must ensure that scientists are trained in the areas of highest need for translation of data and experiments into clinical practice. This proposal builds on an existing interdisciplinary education and research training program developed at MD Anderson Cancer Center, where we have a single mission to eliminate cancer, in order to expand and enhance the training of outstanding predoctoral and postdoctoral fellows using an innovative curriculum and multidisciplinary approach centered on core competencies in state-of-the-art areas of translational research. Objectives: 1) to provide a comprehensive program with both depth and breadth in areas important to the future of translational cancer research including translational genomics and precision medicine approaches, early detection and prognosis of cancer, as well as diagnostic applications; 2) to recruit top predoctoral and postdoctoral fellows interested in a career in translational cancer research in this area; 3) to provide fellows with an innovative environment, infrastructure, faculty and administrative support to allow them to make significant contributions to the field and further the mission of the MD Anderson Cancer Center. Rationale: Translational Genomics and Precision Medicine in Cancer (TGP) Training Program: The TGP program will provide the necessary education and training as well as infrastructure and oversight to develop innovative, big data genome scientists. A highly competitive selection process will identify outstanding candidates and ensure diversity in the process. Qualified candidates, in addition to a mentored research experience by one of our outstanding training grant faculty, will gain individualized, interdisciplinary training in core competency areas critical to the future of translational science in a postgenome world. Design of T32 Program: The T32 will offer 3 postdoctoral and 1 predoctoral fellowships designed around core competencies which include: 1) translational cancer research, to gain exposure to mechanistic studies in translational research and their importance to the human organism; 2) precision medicine to gain experience in state-of-the-art approaches to diagnose and treat cancer patients; 3) translational genetics and genomics to gain competency in understanding and implementation of cancer precision medicine; 4) bioinformatics, to learn how to read and interpret large datasets; and 5) exposure to clinical grand rounds, tumor boards, and industrial collaborations. Key activities include: grant writing workshops, NIH grant development, and focused mentoring. All trainees will be required to have strong interest in cancer research and for postdoctorates, experience in cancer research. Training duration will be 2 years for postdoctoral and up to 3 years for predoctoral fellows with training faculty associated with UT MD Anderson Cancer Center and with the UT Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences.
A training program is proposed to train the next generation of postgenome cancer researchers, including multidisciplinary training in: 1) translational cancer research, to gain exposure to mechanistic studies in translational research and their importance to the human organism; 2) precision medicine to gain experience in state-of-the-art ways to diagnose and target treatment of cancer patients based on genomic profiles; 3) translational genetics and genomics, to gain competency in translational genomics needed for future understanding and implementation of cancer precision medicine; 4) bioinformatics, to learn how to read and interpret large genomics datasets; 5) exposure to relevant tumor boards and to industrial collaborations with academic faculty mentors on large scale genomic applications to cancer precision medicine. An outstanding training faculty has been assembled from the MD Anderson Cancer Center, the number one cancer center in the country, to provide state-of-the-art education and training for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows to further the mission of MD Anderson to provide outstanding state-of-the-art research-driven patient care.