The goal of this new postdoctoral program is to train young scientists, particularly physician scientists, and promote careers focused on understanding the basic mechanisms underlying disorders of the developing nervous system. Multidisciplinary training is planned in scientific disciplines relevant to the study of neurodevelopmental disorders. Thus, 19 training faculty were selected from 5 departments. The faculty includes 4 MDs, 2 MD/Ph.Ds and 13 Ph.Ds. Their ranks are: 11 Professors, 3 Associate Professors and 5 Assistant Professors. Dr. Swann will serve as Program Director and be responsible for the day-to-day operation of the program. Dr. Zoghbi and Dr. Noebels will serve as Co-Directors. Major training areas include the genetic and molecular basis of inherited neurodevelopmental disorders including: Rett Syndrome, Angelman's Syndrome, Fragile X Syndrome, Downs Syndrome, Miller-Dicker Lissencephaly and Generalized Spike-Wave Epilepsy. Another, shared focus of study will be epilepsy where neuroscience laboratories use advanced imaging and electrophysiological techniques to study the cellular and molecular abnormalities relevant to chronic models of both inherited and acquired seizure disorders. All the laboratories of the faculty provide expertise in cutting-edge biotechnology for the creation and study of animal models. Three separate training tracks are planned. One is for MD/PhDs and MDs with substantial basic science research experience. Another is for less experienced MDs and the third for PhDs. These latter MD students will be advised by individualized research advisory committees on their choice of laboratory rotations and graduate level courses. PhDs will receive substantial training in the clinical aspects of neurodevelopmental disorders through clinical conferences, subspeciality clinics and hospital rounds. Baylor College of Medicine has committed substantial resources to the study of the basic mechanisms of diseases including those of the developing brain. Laboratory space and core laboratories are outstanding. Pediatric Neurology clinics, laboratories and centers, including a NIH funded Mental Retardation Research Center, will be important resources for postdoctoral trainees. There are currently 84 postdoctoral students in the laboratories of the training faculty, including 14 MD/PhDs, 8 MDs and 62 PhDs. By training a new generation of outstanding research scientists, we hope new approaches for the treatment and cure of devastating developmental disorders in infants and young children will emerge.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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Tagle, Danilo A
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Baylor College of Medicine
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