This application proposes a 5-year continuation (Yrs 26-30) of an NIMH National Research Service Award (T32 MH018869) entitled, Traumatic Stress Across the Lifespan: A Biopsychosocial Training Program, at the Medical University of South Carolina. We seek support for 6 postdoctoral positions per year and anticipate each postdoctoral appointment will be for 2 years. The primary goal of this training program is to provide postdoctoral fellows (PhDs, MDs or MD/PhDs) with the research acumen, resources and career opportunities necessary for their development into productive, independent clinical scientists, conducting traumatic stress- related mental health research of high

Public Health Relevance

. Whereas all fellows will receive training in core competencies of translational traumatic stress research, each fellow will select specialized training in one of two tracks - Epidemiology Risk and Resiliency (ERR) research or Treatment Development, Evaluation and Dissemination (TED) research. Training will be outlined in each fellow's Individualized Training Plan and guided by the fellow's selection of a Primary Mentor from among faculty at the National Crime Victims Research and Treatment Center (NCVC) and a Co-Mentor from among other MUSC faculty and additional academic institutions. Co-Mentors (MDs and PhDs) add great breadth to training opportunities through their complementary expertise in areas of translational or clinical science spanning behavioral genetics, neurobiology, neuroimaging, developmental psychopathology, child psychiatry, substance abuse, health services research, epidemiology and HIV prevention. Fellows also will benefit from a full array of core, selective and elective training options that include internationally-recognized researchers as guest speakers, formal coursework, workshops and seminars, training in the ethics of translational research and responsible conduct of research, multicultural and community-based research training, writing club, journal club, and career development retreats. The caliber of the training program is clearly reflected in the 24-year record of notable accomplishments and scientific contributions made by previous fellows. Of the 47 fellows supported in the past 10 years, 84% are either in training or employed full-time in scientific research, teaching or administration in traumatic-stress research relevant positions. Fellows from the past 10 years have already received 20 NIH grants, including 5 R01s and 4 K-Awards, in addition to numerous other federal and foundation grants, and in total have produced 833 publications. A primary strength of the training fellowship, which drives its ability to recruit the highest caliber candidates, is the thrving programs of research at the NCVC that include a number of ongoing, federally-funded projects encompassing national epidemiological studies of exposure to traumatic stressors and risk of mental health disorders, gene-environment interaction (GxE) studies of resilience following exposure to disasters, treatment development and randomized clinical trials (RCTs), and projects addressing translation of effective treatments to clinical practice. PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE: Traumatic stress is a well-documented risk factor for a range of mental health disorders that are both prevalent and costly to the person and society. For example, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and other anxiety disorders that may extend from trauma exposure are estimated to cost ~$42 billion/yr with regard to healthcare utilization, psychiatric and other medical treatment, and daily living impairment (e.g., work productivity). This program integrates the latest findings and concepts in (1) epidemiologic risk and resilience and (2) treatment development, evaluation and dissemination research with core training in methodology, ethics, career development and multicultural research. The unique synergy of formal training activities and hands-on research mentoring equips junior translational and clinical researchers with the necessary skill set to enhance knowledge in the highly relevant public health arena of traumatic stress-related mental health disorder prevention, intervention and treatment.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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Application #
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZMH1)
Program Officer
Sarampote, Christopher S
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Budget End
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Fiscal Year
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Medical University of South Carolina
Schools of Medicine
United States
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