Interdisciplinary Training in Movement Disorders and Neurorestoration

Diagram 3

T32 NS082128, Sponsored by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)

Co-directed by Dr. Dawn Bowers & Dr. David Vaillancourt. Provides 4 Predoctoral training slots/year

Movement is core to who we are as humans. Diseases that affect movement strip away our ability to live effectively, which can lead to problems with processing our emotions and can have deleterious effects on how we think. The goal of this program is to help train a future generation of independent investigators with programs of research in movement disorders that focus on the ABCs of translational research: Aetiology, biomarkers/phenotypes, causative and/or symptom based therapies. The program encompasses three themes of critical relevance:

  • Human movement and cognitive neuroscience
  • Molecular biology and animal models
  • Translational neuroscience and physiology

A key component  of this program is cross-disciplinary exposure among the trainees. This is achieved by pairing trainees with basic and clinical neuroscience mentors, monthly meetings of the trainees where their research is presented and discussed, luncheon meetings with T32 sponsored outside speakers, and project-oriented interactions among the trainees. This training program capitalizes on existing clinical and research strengths of faculty of the University of Florida’s Center for Movement Disorders and Neurorestoration and affiliated Centers of Excellence for Parkinson’s disease, dystonia, ataxia, and Huntington’s disease. Desired program outcome is the building of a cadre of rigorously trained, scientifically competent and innovative young scientists focused on increasing our understanding and treatment of Parkinson’s disease and other movement disorders.

Trainees: Predoctoral students, typically for 2 years of doctoral work

Faculty:   Mentors and Clinical Educators

Colleges/Departments:

Medicine (COM):   IDP Biomedical Sciences (Molecular Biology, Neuroscience, Genetics, Biochemistry), Neurology,Neurosurgery, Psychiatry

Engineering (ENG):  Biomedical Engineering

Health & Human Performance (HHP): Applied Physiology & Kinesiology

Public Health & Health Professions (PHHP):  Clinical and Health Psychology/Neuropsychology – Cognitive Neuroscience; Physical Therapy – Rehabilitation Science