We seek to renew our postdoctoral Interdisciplinary Training Program in Biobehavioral Pain Research at the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions (JHMI). Chronic pain is one of the most common and disabling symptoms in our society. Pain is a highly complex phenomenon that involves, genetic, molecular, neurophysiologic, cognitive-emotional, and sociocultural determinants. The treatment of pain remains inadequate in almost every clinical situation and consequently demands programs to create specialized, interdisciplinary training in pain research that addresses the tremendous challenge of developing, evaluating, disseminating, and integrating effective pain treatments into clinical care. The overarching goal of the proposed postdoctoral program is to prepare the next generation of innovative research leaders to work cooperatively within an interdisciplinary team to address the complex problem of pain. To this end, we are again requesting support for four postdoctoral fellows. We expect each of these fellows to stay in the program for two years, unless they receive independent funding (e.g. an F32 grant). To encourage a diverse program, we are requesting support for two fellows (PhDs) who are in the first year of post-graduate research (PGY0), as well as two fellows who have completed their residency following medical school (PGY5). This renewal proposes to emphasize the neuroscience of pain throughout the training. Each faculty mentor is actively funded, engaged in the education of young investigators, and committed to interdisciplinary collaboration. The Program incorporates coursework and mentored research experiences in at least two scientific domains that are synthesized by: 1) an integrated research project, 2) an extramural grant application, and 3) the writing and publishing of papers. The training objectives are to: 1) develop an enhanced foundation in the neuroscience of pain; 2) engender a broad conceptualization of pain that includes, but is not limited to, neurobiologic, cognitive, emotional, behavioral, and social processes; 3) develop skills for communicating, networking and collaborating with scientists in other disciplines; and 4) design and conduct an integrative pain research project. Each fellow is to be collaboratively mentored by two core faculty with distinct domains of pain research expertise in either: 1) neuroscience, 2) clinical research and 3) behavioral or social science. Program faculty cut across the Schools of Medicine, Nursing, and Public Health. Our goal is to prepare the next generation of pain scientists to lead interdisciplinary research teams that will innovatively address the problem of pain using transformative research paradigms.

Public Health Relevance

Pain is one of the most common and disabling symptoms in our society and advances in pain treatment have been disappointing at best. Given that even mild pain can impair our ability to function, it is important to develop interdisciplinary researchrs capable of leading innovative studies to unravel the causes of persistent pain and discover better pain relief strategies. Our goal is to prepare the next generation of pain researchers to lead this effort. 1. To develop an enhanced foundation in the neuroscience of pain 2. To understand broad conceptualizations of pain including, but not limited to cognitive, emotional, behavioral, social and neurobiologic processes. 3. To develop skills for communicating, networking and collaborating with scientists in other disciplines. 4. To design and conduct an integrative study of pain as a primary symptom

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZNS1)
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Korn, Stephen J
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Johns Hopkins University
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United States
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