This program aims to provide excellent pre- and postdoctoral trainees with the breadth of knowledge and research skills essential to develop successful independent research programs in neuroendocrinology. Funds are requested for three pre- and two postdoctoral students. A hallmark of this program is that it unites trainees and faculty from two graduate programs to provide a perspective far broader than what could be obtained through a single program. The proposed training embraces multiple levels of analysis, from behavioral, to physiological, to cellular, to molecular. Predoctoral trainees enter the program in their third year, after finishing the specific course requirements of their respective graduate programs. Each student chooses both a primary advisor and a co-advisor. The role of the primary advisor is similar to the traditional role of the thesis advisor. The co-advisor ensures the multidisciplinary character of the training. Trainees will spend part of their time in the laboratory of the co-advisor, using techniques and approaches not available in their home laboratory to address questions intimately related to their own thesis research. Postdoctoral trainees will be supported for two years. The primary focus of the postdoctoral training is to build a strong research record. Postdoctoral trainees will also be actively mentored to foster skills in oral presentation, grant writing, and teaching, essential to secure and hold an independent academic position. All trainees will actively participate in monthy meetings in which the participating laboratories present their research. A lineup of faculty and invited speakers will participate in annual seminars and journal clubs that will expose trainees to new developments, historical aspects, ethical issues, and translational aspects of neuroendocrine research. Hands-on workshops will expose the trainees and faculty to cutting-edge technology. Finally an annual symposium will introduce trainees to neuroendocrinologists from across the U.S.A. Training in Neuroendocrinology is relevant to human health as hormone dysfunction is linked to a host of neurological and behavioral disorders, e.g., postpartum depression, sleep and eating disorders, and progress of degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer. Neuroendocrinology can also explain how common environmental pollutants disrupt hormone-brain interactions, thereby causing, e.g., fertility problems, mental retardation, and cancer. Several of the preceptors have research programs directly related to these issues.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZMH1-ERB-L (01))
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Desmond, Nancy L
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University of Massachusetts Amherst
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Breves, Jason P; McCormick, Stephen D; Karlstrom, Rolf O (2014) Prolactin and teleost ionocytes: new insights into cellular and molecular targets of prolactin in vertebrate epithelia. Gen Comp Endocrinol 203:21-8
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