CMTRTP Abstract The National Research Council has documented a dire national need for veterinary specialists trained in biomedical research. Furthermore, veterinary researchers play a key role in comparative and translational research activities since they naturally bridge basic and clinical research. To address this training need, we request continued NIH funding for 7 fellows per year for 3 years. NC State University will provide funding for up to 2 fellows per year and 2 pre-T32 positions. Trainees will be degree-seeking fellows in the Comparative Medicine and Translational Research training program established by the faculty in the College of Veterinary Medicine (CVM) and the Comparative Medicine Institute (CMI) at North Carolina State University. This training program specifically targets individuals with the DVM degree who have completed specialty training and is designed to prepare trainees to compete for an early career development award and a rapid transition to independence as a principal investigator or in another research-intensive career. Trainees complete requirements leading to the PhD degree in Comparative Biomedical Sciences (CBS) in one of 7 areas of concentration: 1) Immunology 2) Cell Biology, 3) Pharmacology, 4) Neurosciences, 5) Infectious Diseases, 6) Population Medicine, and 7) Pathology. Training faculty are well-funded productive scientists that have a strong training track-record and diverse research expertise. Training faculty are all members of the CBS graduate program and the CMI and represent 4 departments from 2 Colleges. Research projects emphasize comparative and translational themes fostered by the CVM and CMI in tissue engineering, pharmacology and physiology, genetics and genomics, and emerging infectious diseases. Program requirements include: (1) a capstone comparative medicine and translational research seminar course; (2) professional development courses and workshops; (3) a course in research ethics; (4) a grant writing course and a pilot grant program that provide a pathway to a K award; and (5) annual research symposia. These requirements are in addition to those associated with the graduate program. Sixteen fellows have completed training. Thirteen hold faculty positions in academia, one is a research pathologist, and two are research fellows at other institutions. Fellows were awarded 7 NIH or other career development grants and 15 extramural research grants and published 67 papers (48 first author) arising from their research while in training.
The NC State training program in Comparative Medicine and Translational Research addresses two critical national needs in biomedical research. First is the growing need for veterinarians with training in biomedical research. Second is that more emphasis needs to be placed on translation of basic research advances to the clinical setting and this often requires a multidisciplinary approach.
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