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Four Auburn Veterinary Faculty Participating in Six-Month Research Training Program

Four faculty in Auburn University’s College of Veterinary Medicine are completing a prestigious six-month research focused training program through the Center for Clinical and Translational Science, or CCTS.

Maninder Sandey, an assistant professor of pathology in the Department of Pathobiology, has already completed the training. Nicholas Rancilio, an assistant professor of radiation oncology, Department of Clinical Sciences, and Claudia Reyner and Mariano Mora-Pereira, clinical instructors in equine emergency medicine and surgery, Department of Clinical Sciences, will each finish the program in June.

Based at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, the CCTS was established in 2008 and is funded by a Clinical and Translational Science Award from the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences, National Institutes of Health. The CCTS is comprised of a network of 11 academic research institutions throughout the Southeast, including Auburn University, with a mission focused on research, discovery and expertise in the areas of cardiometabolic, vascular and cancer-related diseases.

As a CCTS partner, Auburn provides investigative expertise through imaging, translational animal models, clinical pharmacy, drug development and population outcomes research.

The training, which started in January, involves some 50 hours of instructions in clinical and translation research. Areas covered include clinical trials, epidemiology, biostatistics, ethics, clinical genetics research, behavioral research, outcomes research, dissemination of results and grant writing and funding opportunities.

Lectures are conducted from the UAB campus every Wednesday, but participants have the opportunity to attend via online, real-time media, explains Mora-Pereira.

“Lectures are presented by top experts in their fields,” Mora-Pereira added.

Mentoring also is a large component of the training.

“The mentoring component and the range of diversity in this program is incredible,” said Reyner. “The programs not only bring the expertise, but also, the historic perspectives about the topics.”

Participants must be a member of a CCTS partner institution, according to Sandey, who describes the application process as one that involves the development of a complete research plan with definable goals and objectives.

“As a part of the application process, we have to provide concept description of our research project and support letters from mentor and departmental chair,” Sandey said.

“This program has helped to extend collaboration between our institutions and promote access to resources that might not be widely known among early career faculty,” Rancilio added.

Although all of Auburn’s participants this year are young career faculty, the program is also open to graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. Upon completion, participants are awarded a certificate of training, which they say, will be an added credential in the support of their career research and funding efforts. To learn more about the CCTS and its programs, visit https://www.uab.edu/ccts/.

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(Written by Mitch Emmons, emmonmb@uburn.edu)