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BWH research training chart

Mission and Training Support

Our mission is to produce outstanding physician-scientists in pulmonary and critical care medicine. The depth and diversity of ongoing research at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and in the Harvard Medical Area represent a major strength of our training program. The research portfolio of BWH Pulmonary Division faculty members includes more than 60 million dollars of research funding. Our major objective is to facilitate and support the growth and progress of our fellows as they develop into independent investigators. BWH PCCM faculty members are internationally recognized for their research contributions to the pathogenesis, diagnosis and treatment of lung diseases and have been honored with election into several honorary academic societies of medicine, such as the American Society for Clinical Investigation, American Academy of Physicians, and Interurban Clinical Club. The BWH is proud of its rich tradition in respiratory research and for over 30 years with the Channing Laboratory our academic community has maintained two NIH funded training grants to support three years of fellowship research training. From the time of matriculation, fellows meet regularly with the program director, division chief, and research director to begin the process of developing plans for an area of focused research.

Through our annual Research Retreat, fellows are exposed to the scope of available research opportunities. At this two-day event, investigators present their research from bench to bedside in a disease-specific manner. Additionally, fellows participate in discussions ranging from career development pathway to choosing a mentor, opportunities for research funding, as well as in depth conversation regarding the keys to success in publishing one’s work. Given the large number of physician-scientists on our faculty, fellows will have the opportunity to gain exposure to a range of research opportunities during their first year that will enable them to focus on an area of advanced study beginning in Year 2 and beyond. In the planning stages and throughout the laboratory experience, fellows meet regularly with their mentoring committee, which is comprised of the program director, the division chief, and faculty mentor plus two or three additional faculty advisors. The major purpose of these committee meetings is to efficiently guide the progress and growth of our fellows as they develop into independent investigators.

Training Venues

The BWH PCCM and Channing Division of Network Medicine Laboratories form the core of our research training program. Fellows can pursue areas of clinically relevant basic investigation, and clinical or translational pathways in virtually every aspect of pulmonary disease and critical care medicine (see Faculty profiles). There are extensive opportunities for collaborative investigation between basic science and clinical-translational science laboratories. Within the Channing Division of Network Medicine, fellows pursue training in epidemiology and genetics with the goal of conducting quantitative research in respiratory biology with a particular focus on COPD and asthma. Fellows who engage in basic science investigation can participate in a “Models of Disease” course run by the BWH Department of Medicine. They also will have access to courses at Harvard Medical School, the Harvard School of Public Health, and the Harvard Catalyst for Clinical Research. The BWH has an exciting ongoing collaboration with the Lovelace Respiratory Research Institute in Albuquerque, New Mexico that allows for multidisciplinary investigations that include development of complex animal models of respiratory research. Fellows who pursue clinical-translational science and genetic epidemiology frequently complete the Summer Program in Clinical Effectiveness at the Harvard School of Public Health followed by additional coursework resulting in a master’s in public health degree. Overall, the BWH research program is constructed “without walls” with numerous ongoing collaborative projects with colleagues at Harvard Medical School, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston Children’s Hospital, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the Broad Institute as well as other departments and neighboring institutions.

Areas of Active Research

Active research programs spanning molecular to clinical research are in place in virtually every aspect of pulmonary disease and critical care medicine (see Faculty profiles) and welcome fellows to participate in ongoing projects. These areas include:

  • Acute Lung Injury/ ARDS
  • Asthma/Immunology
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
  • Exercise Physiology
  • Global Health
  • Interstitial Lung Disease
  • Interventional Pulmonology
  • Lung Imaging
  • Lung nodules
  • Lymphangioleiomyomatosis
  • Pleural Diseases
  • Pulmonary Hypertension
  • Sepsis
  • Sleep Disorders
  • Stem Cell Biology
  • Tuberculosis
Research Community

We are proud of the multiple ongoing collaborative research projects within our division with local and national collaborators. We have several Program Project Grants that allow for exciting translational research studies. We have a variety of regular research conferences that provide fellows and faculty a rich environment for the exchange of ideas and promote the creation of new collaborative projects. In addition, our fellows can present their work at the annual American Thoracic Society Conference as well as at other national and international venues, including the American Heart Association Meetings, Gordon Conferences, and Keystone Conferences.

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