The goal of this program is to train highly qualified young pediatricians in the genetics, pathogenesis, evaluation, and management of pediatric endocrine disorders including diabetes and obesity. Training in metabolic, immunological and genetic aspects of the diseases encompassed by the discipline will be emphasized. In addition to the traditional core of training in Pediatric Endocrinology, molecular biology, molecular genetics and gene therapy will be featured, since these new dimensions for diagnosis and treatment of endocrine diseases of childhood will have to be mastered by future leaders of the field. Future gains in the understanding of pediatric endocrine diseases will come about through an integration of basic and clinical sciences and the collaboration of individuals from many and diverse disciplines. The national pool of scientists capable of making the next advances in pediatric endocrinology-diabetology is severely limited. The program at Weill-Cornell has an excellent record of training such leaders; however, sufficient protected time for laboratory research for trainees has been chronically constrained. The Pediatric Endocrine-Diabetes Training Program (Pediatrap) described herein is based on the collaborative mentorship of basic and clinical scientists at the tri-institutional complex of Well-Cornell College of Medicine, Rockefeller University, Memorial Sloan-Kettering, and affiliated Columbia College of Physicians & Surgeons. Two MD trainees who have completed residency and the first year of subspecialty training in Pediatric Endocrinology will be taken into the program for two years of training each year. Qualified applicants from ethnic minorities will be sought through the Endocrine Society and other organizations with minority recruitment objectives. For each trainee, there will be a required core course curriculum and attendance at seminars and symposia, with mentored laboratory training by preceptors with active funded research programs who can support the trainee's investigational experience over a 2-year period. A consulting faculty of experts in a wide range of related disciplines will participate in the lecture series and supplementary laboratory training appropriate to the trainee's research interests. A distinguished executive committee will ensure cohesive and focused use of the tri-institutional complex as well as ongoing evaluation of the program. The strengths of this research training program are the depth and breadth of expertise and training experience of the preceptors, the availability of a pediatric GCRC, the commitment of a distinguished group of consulting faculty, the demonstrated success of the faculty as research mentors, the interactions among the various faculty members and trainees, and the prodigious research resources of four outstanding research institutions. The national need for laboratory training of clinically informed pediatric endocrinologists-diabetologists is acute. The growth in such endocrine disorders as obesity, insulin resistance syndromes, diabetes, hypertension, immune-mediated endocrine diseases, and adrenal and ovarian genetic disorders resents a challenge, which this application is designed to meet.
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