Clinical Neuroscientist Training Program (CNS-TP) 

Leadership

george_richerson
Director
kumar_narayanan
Assistant Director

Description

Physician scientists play a key role in current biomedical research due to their ability to integrate knowledge derived from clinical activities with experimental observations in the laboratory. In recognition of the importance of this role, we offer the Clinical Neuroscientist Training Program (CNS-TP), which integrates post-graduate research and clinical training through residency and fellowship. The CNS-TP adheres to the principles of Flexible Training in Neurology proposed by the American Neurological Association, and is designed to fully utilize the resources of the Department of Neurology, Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Neuroscience and University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine.

The University of Iowa Neurology Residency Program offers the CNS-TP pathway for selected trainees, with an individualized and flexible postgraduate training program that spans the four-year residency.  Trainees also have the option of a guaranteed fellowship/postdoctoral training with any faculty member at the University of Iowa for up to two additional years. The program is designed for physicians interested in pursuing a career in academic neurology who have already demonstrated interest and proficiency in biomedical research. The competitive CNS-TP candidate will hold the MD degree (or equivalent), with or without a PhD, and show clear evidence of a strong desire to pursue an academic career in clinical neuroscience or clinically-relevant basic neuroscience – typically manifest as a strong record of scientific publication.

Candidates who enter the program will enjoy close mentorship from leading neuroscientists at the University of Iowa, matched on the basis of their specific career interests.  Candidates will undergo training with significant flexibility to facilitate the integration of clinical rotations and research activities, and will receive a supplemental stipend and academic allowances. The ultimate goal of the CNS-TP is to foster the career development of trainees by facilitating their transition to independent physician-scientists, and to make them competitive for a K award, an RO1, or other funding mechanism. The scientific training will not be made at the expense of strong clinical training, and the rotation schedule will be such that their fellow residents will not have their schedules adversely affected.

The infrastructure for basic, clinical, and translational research at Iowa is broad and the commitment to biomedical and neuroscience research is strong. The CNS-TP resident will benefit from various programs and laboratories of the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine, including the Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Neuroscience, the Iowa Medical Scientist Training Program, the Institute for Clinical and Translational Science, the Physician Scientist Training Pathway, the Pappajohn Biomedical Institute, the Center for Gene Therapy, and the NIH-funded Pain Training Program, among many others. Trainees will also benefit from outstanding Core Research Facilities that provide state-of-the-art research resources to facilitate biomedical research, and the recently created Office of Postdoctoral Scholars that serves as the administrative home for postdoctoral scholars and fellows at the University of Iowa.

The Clinical Neuroscientist Training Program at a Glance

  • An enhanced interview experience, including meetings with key Iowa scientific leadership
  • 12 months of elective time to pursue research, during the 48 month residency, protected other than continuity of care clinic and call
  • Substantial stipend supplementation (PG-2 through PG-4 years) and academic allowances, contingent upon demonstrated progress and achievement of specific benchmarks (see Table below)
  • Personal career mentoring from onset of the program
  • Networking with other University of Iowa professional development programs (Medical Scientist Training ProgramPhysician Scientist Training Pathway, Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Neuroscience, Office of Postdoctoral Scholars) through journal clubs, research days, and ad hoc gatherings
  • Upon graduation, all qualifications for American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology eligibility will be met
  • Guarantee of funding for two years of post-graduate research fellowship in selected field of interest
  • Progress will be reviewed yearly by June 1st

Year

 

Milestones

 

PG-1

1 month elective
Select research mentor

PG-2

3 months elective
Define specific aims for research project
Deliver a lecture on research proposal at CNS-TP seminar
Submit full written research proposal (1-2 pages)

PG-3

4 months elective
Refine specific research aims
Collect preliminary data
Deliver a lecture at CNS-TP seminar
Mutual decision made whether to progress to fellowship year

PG-4

4 months elective
Continue to collect data and refine specific aims
Deliver a Grand Rounds lecture
Write and submit grant (e.g. K08, K99)

Optional PG-5

12 months postdoctoral research in any lab of your choice at the University of Iowa
Start of 18 months postdoctoral research at any institution with an NIH R25
Continue to collect data and refine specific aims
Resubmit grant if necessary

Optional PG-6

Continue to collect data and refine specific aims
Resubmit grant if necessary

Applying to the CNS-TP

  • Interest in the CNS-TP can be expressed upon application to the residency program by emailing the Program Director of the Neurology Residency. While less desirable, candidates can apply for admission as late as the beginning of the PGY2 year.
  • Candidates must apply through ERAS and match through the NRMP match
  • Selection will be made on a competitive basis by evaluation of prior accomplishments in a research program and clear evidence of interest in a career as a physician-scientist

Current Residents in the CNS-TP

Past Residents in the CNS-TP

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