Research and Career Training in Vertebrate Developmental Genomics

Principal Investigator: John Schimenti

Department of Biomedical Sciences
Sponsor: NIH-National Institute of Child Health & Human Development (NICHD)
Grant Number: 2T32HD057854-06A1
Title: Research and Career Training in Vertebrate Developmental Genomics
Project Amount: $125,208
Project Period: May 2016 to April 2017

DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): 

This application seeks renewed support for a training program in Vertebrate Developmental Genomics at Cornell University. This program supports the training of 3 predoctoral students who have begun their thesis research. Fifteen faculty will serve as faculty Trainers. They represent a range of expertise including functional genomics, developmental genetics, evolutionary genomics, statistical genetics, reproductive genomics, and genomics of gene regulation, classical embryogenesis, and genetics of developmental disorders. Their research concentrates on vertebrate organisms including mice, zebrafish, chick, and humans. They also provide expertise in several important areas of vertebrate development and disease, including neurobiology, reproductive biology, stem cells, organogenesis, heart disease & function, chromatin structure & function, early post implantation development, evolution of development, epigenetics, nutritional genomics, and cancer. Graduate students in their 2nd year and beyond will be selected from several existing graduate Fields across campus. Selection will be based upon academic and research promise of the student, the quality and relevance of their thesis work in vertebrate developmental genomics, and aspirations to conduct independent research in this area. The training program is augmented by its association with Cornell's Center for Vertebrate Genomics (CVG), which sponsors several activities supportive of graduate training. The 3 trainees form a peer group with ~5 CVG Genomics Scholars who participate in several shared activities but conduct research in diverse areas of genomics. Most trainees will obtain a Minor degree in Genomics, and participate in several activities related to the training theme including: the student/postdoc-organized Vertebrate Genomics Journal Club; the Developmental Biology Journal Club; the "VERGE" (Vertebrate Genomics) research series; the annual CVG symposium; monthly lunch meetings for informal research discussions and presentations; ethics training; and relevant external conferences and courses. Selection of students and monitoring of their ongoing and postgraduate career progress will be overseen by an Executive committee and Program-assigned mentor, their thesis committee, and an external advisory committee. Coupled with an exceptional tradition of dedication to training academic researchers and targeted Institutional support for Vertebrate Genomics, this program will continue to provide an outstanding environment for Trainees to pursue successful careers in basic or applied research in developmental genomics.