This is a doctoral training program in pharmacological sciences. The first year of training in biomedical sciences at Vanderbilt University Medical Center is interdisciplinary, and involves participation in a year-long bioregulation core course. Students who select preceptors in the Pharmacological Sciences Training Program in their first year then begin the required course work of this graduate program including: pharmacological targets and mechanisms systems (including in vivo physiology and drug disposition); receptors and signal transduction; the pharmacological basis of drug action; and scientific communications. In addition, students take at least six additional hours of elective courses to accommodate individual interests and needs.
Research opportunities are available in six general areas: receptor mechanisms and signal transduction, molecular mechanisms for cellular regulation, drug disposition ad pharcokinetics. Course work is complemented by other important didactic experiences: weekly journal club, a student-invited annual pharmacology forum; an annual Department of Pharmacology Retreat for presenting upcoming research goals; and exchange programs between Vanderbilt and Meharry Medical College to strengthen the broad-base education of our students as well as to foster the careers of under-repsresented minorities in research. Comprehensive qualifying examinations and defense of the dissertation proposal precedes dissertation research; dissertation committee meeting s occur frequently to facilitate mentoring.
The breadth of interests of the faculty, their international recognition, and success in acquiring extramural peer-reviewed support, their understanding of the scientific process and our emphasis on scientific integrity make this program an outstanding environment for the training of independent scientists in the area of pharmacological sciences. The training program is funded the National Institute of General Medical Sciences. The program has 40 faculty preceptors. Funds support fifteen predoctoral trainees.