CIRM Training Program in Stem Cell Biology and Engineering

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CIRM Training Program in Stem Cell Biology and Engineering

Statement of Benefit to California:
Chronic incurable disease inflicts a tremendous burden on the citizens of the state of California, leading to a loss of lives and costing billions of dollars in health care expenses. We lack effective treatments for heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, diabetes, cancer and blinding diseases such as macular degeneration and retinitis pigmentosa. New treatments are needed, and cell and gene therapies provide immense potential that goes beyond traditional small molecule drugs and biologics. The proposed training program will educate postdoctoral scholars and graduate student scholars in the fields of stem cell biology, gene therapy and regenerative medicine. Our program will emphasize interdisciplinary training, at the interface of biology and engineering, and include cutting edge coursework, laboratory training, and outreach and patient engagement activities. The Program will recruit and promote interactions among trainees from diverse backgrounds and disciplines and prepare these young scientists to be tomorrow's leaders in developing treatments for unmet medical needs.