The primary goal of the UCLA NIH T32 GI Training grant is to continue to train the next generation of
outstanding GI academic thought leaders. The T32 program supports 6 trainees/year including Adult
and Pediatric GI fellows, General Surgery residents, and other UCLA post-doctoral trainees. The
T32 training period is 2 years except for the UCLA STAR (Specialized Training in Academic Research)
fellows who may be funded for 2 or 3 years for PhD's completion. In this competing renewal application,
the level of support requested is for 6 trainees/year. Our specific objectives are to: 1) Recruit and
train the most outstanding, committed, and promising trainees as specified above including
underrepresented minorities and women; 2) Support T32 post-graduate training at UCLA including PhD
or masters programs and graduate coursework. 3) Provide mentored research training by dedicated,
experienced, and successful faculty and also career development in individualized structured research
programs. We will accomplish these goals by: 1) Individualizing career development and guidance by
the mentors and other faculty career advisors through personalized advocacy, structuring independent
research projects, and graduate education. 2) Continuing opportunities for rigorous interaction of trainees
with UCLA GI leaders, successful investigators, and visiting professors as well as through enrichment
programs, annual scientific GI research meetings, and research workshops from the UCLA:DDRCC;
UCLA Departments of Medicine, Surgery, Pediatric, Pathology, and Basic Sciences; and the UCLA CTSI.
3) Sustaining a multi-disciplinary administrative T32 leadership structure that has been successful in
supporting and regularly interacting with the faculty and trainees, is highly responsive to trainees'
requests and needs, and has evolved through strategic planning and continuous feedback. The T32
leadership and UCLA program directors will also facilitate transition to junior faculty positions through
career development workshops and individually advising the trainees. These specific objectives are to
be implemented by an administrative leadership of four dedicated investigators: the PD/PI Dennis
Jensen, MD who is a clinical investigator, very experienced as the T32 director for 20 years; and
three co-Directors - Yvette Taché, PhD (a senior neuro-gastroenterologist and basic scientist);
Joseph Pisegna, MD (a physician-scientist in basic and translational research); and Martin G.
Martin, MD (a pediatric physician-scientist in genetics and basic intestinal luminal research).
There are 34 participating mentoring faculty and a T32 Executive Committee who provide excellent
opportunities for mentored research training, career guidance, and advocacy by insuring ethical conduct
of research and individualized training so that all T32 awardees are successful as physician- or surgeon
scientists and other independent investigators in gastroenterology.