About the Program

The fellowship program builds on the internationally recognized leadership of the University of Iowa in the field of human genetics and a state of the art Molecular Diagnostics Laboratory to provide a unique training experience in all areas of molecular pathology. The Molecular Pathology Laboratory serves as the primary site for molecular testing of genetic, infectious and neoplastic diseases from the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics as well as for regional, national and international clients. We have over 30 diagnostic tests utilizing various methods including qualitative/quantitative PCR and real-time PCR, DNA sequencing, traditional and capillary electrophoresis and Southern blotting. The MGP fellowship includes six months of hands-on training in the Molecular Pathology Laboratory with special emphasis on molecular genetics, infectious disease and oncology, respectively. Another three to four months are spent predominantly in the Genetics Division of the Department of Pediatrics. This block includes two months of general genetics and a month of cytogenetics training. The Cytogenetics Laboratory will provide exposure to traditional cytogenetics, FISH and Comparative Genomic Hybridization using microarray technology. During these rotations the fellow functions as a junior attending, with levels of responsibility and supervision appropriate for level of training and experience. The fellow is also exposed to administrative aspects of directing a modern molecular diagnostics laboratory.

The remaining two-three months are spent with independent test development in the Molecular Pathology Laboratory or on basic research projects in any one of numerous laboratories associated with the program. The fellows are encouraged to use this time to obtain preliminary data serving as the basis for applications for career development grants from federal and private agencies.

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