The goal of the UC Davis Chemical Biology Program (CBP) is to provide effective cross training at the chemistry/biology interface for pre-doctoral candidates. After their CBP cross training, these students will understand the value of the synthesis and analysis tools traditionally associated with chemistry in addressing problems related to biological pathways, cells, tissues and organisms with a particular focus on biological questions related to human health. The chemical biology community at UC Davis includes a large group of productive, well-funded and collaborative faculty members with a strong history of mentoring pre-doctoral students. The CBP faculty comprises 29 trainers with primary appointments in six different departments in five different colleges. CBP faculty research programs cover a broad swath of topics (e.g. calcium signaling, glycobiology, metabolic engineering, DNA repair, RNA modification, translation, photoreception, photosynthesis, cancer therapeutics, drug metabolism, metabolomics, molecular imaging and genome editing) using an extensive range of approaches (e.g. genetics, genomics, x-ray crystallography, NMR spectroscopy, EPR spectroscopy, mass spectrometry, combinatorial chemistry, high throughput screening, computational modeling, enzymology and organic synthesis). Trainees will be selected for this program from the top first year students with an expressed interest in carrying out thesis research at the chemistry/biology interface from five different graduate groups (Chemistry; Biochemistry, Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology; Biomedical Engineering; Pharmacology and Toxicology and Biophysics). These students will engage in cross training coursework, cross training laboratory rotations, research-in-progress presentations, career development activities, responsible conduct in research training and annual retreats. This proposal requests support for eight predoctoral student slots to support 4-5 trainees for two years each, typically during the second and third years of their PhD training. This support, along with the major institutional commitments made by UC Davis, will establish a predoctoral program that will more effectively prepare our trainees for scientific careers at the chemistry/biology interface.
This grant will support a new program at UC Davis that will provide predoctoral cross training at the chemistry/biology interface. Program activities will prepare students for careers in the biomedical workforce where they can effectively communicate and direct research programs that integrate approaches across these two disciplines.
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