Colorado PROFILES, The Colorado Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CCTSI)
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Research Training in Rheumatology

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The primary goal of this T32 program is to provide outstanding research training in the pathogenesis of rheumatic and autoimmune diseases for individuals at several key levels of career development (medical and predoctoral graduate students, residents, and postdoctoral MD and PhD fellows). The longstanding scientific opportunities in Denver in basic, translational and clinical research, together with innovative programs available through the NIH-funded Colorado Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CCTSI) with its Clinical Research Training Program and formal didactic training in clinical investigation for MD and PhD trainees, provide a highly supportive environment to promote the goals of this training program. Graduate School Programs provide substantial formal training as well as intellectual and laboratory resources for trainees interested in basic research. Extensive mentoring and educational programs in responsible conduct of research and scientific rigor continue to enhance the quality of the training experiences. Notably, the Division of Rheumatology is physically located in an Autoimmunity Center space and is proximate to the Department of Immunology and Microbiology that has recently moved to the same campus, which places trainees in direct proximity to faculty from many disciplines whose principal focus is on the shared pathogenic mechanisms of autoimmune diseases. Additionally, the ongoing support of the NIH-funded Autoimmunity Prevention Center and Colorado Autoimmunity Center of Excellence, the Studies of the Etiology of Rheumatoid Arthritis (SERA), a rapidly expanding Colorado Center for Personalized Medicine, and the Colorado School of Public Health further facilitate a comprehensive training environment. The training program will remain under the direction of Dr. Michael Holers, Professor of Medicine and Immunology and Head of the Division of Rheumatology. Dr. Holers will be assisted by three Co-Directors, Drs. Jill M. Norris, Kevin Deane and Susan A. Boackle. There are twenty-one Participating Faculty Members. Support is requested to continue training three postdoctoral fellows per year as well as two medical students and two pre-doctoral graduate students per year. The curriculum for the School of Medicine includes research-intensive programs that will continue to provide access to medical student trainees, and the Graduate School encompasses >20 PhD granting programs as well as a Medical Scientist Training Program, to facilitate graduate student recruitment. The Department of Medicine has established within the residency program a Physician Scientist Training Program (PSTP), two members of which will soon enter the Rheumatology Fellowship. The primary criteria by which the program will continue to be judged is the successful development of academic investigators who drive the basic research and clinical practice advances necessary to improve the health of patients with rheumatic diseases. Over the past 30 years this NIAMS-funded T32 training program has compiled an excellent record; for example, in the last ten years, five of six completed MD trainees currently hold full time academic positions.
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