Newswise — Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (UMSOM) received a $5.5 million award from the National Institute of Health’s (NIH) Fogarty International Center to help foster the next generation of global health scientists. The award entitled, “Integrated Network of Scholars in Global Health Research Training (INSIGHT)” will expand global health research across sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia, Latin America, and the Caribbean by providing one-year mentored research training to U.S. and lower-middle income country scholars.
The INSIGHT grant was awarded in March 2022 to Man Charurat, PhD, MHS, Professor of Medicine in the Institute of Human Virology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine and Global Director of the Center for International Health, Education, and Biosecurity (Ciheb), and multiple principle investigators from University of Alabama, Baylor College of Medicine, and University of Pittsburgh. INSIGHT will include multidisciplinary research training in the areas of HIV, emerging and reemerging infectious diseases, noncommunicable diseases, and mental health across the lifespan using evidence-based research and practices, clinical science, laboratory science, and behavioral and social sciences. This research will take place across 24 institutions in 20 lower-middle income countries.
“With the enthusiasm of young scientists from the U.S. and lower-middle income country institutions and strong mentorship from seasoned scientists across the globe, we hope to contribute to the next generation of impactful and innovative global health researchers,” said Dr. Charurat.
The five-year grant will train 105 scholars as predoctoral or postdoctoral fellows. The trainees will spend most of the year at a location in a lower-middle income country. The trainee will have an onsite mentor, as well as one based in one of the U.S. partner institutions.
“The INSIGHT program hosted by the University of Maryland School of Medicine will help train the next generation of leaders in global health research- both US and foreign,” said Roger I. Glass, MD, PhD, Director, Fogarty International Center, NIH. “This grant will provide mentored fellowships to build strong research collaborations and future leaders who will accelerate the advance of biomedical research that will lead to real improvements in human health in all areas while also enhancing our biosecurity against the next pandemic.”
The INSIGHT Steering Committee and other subcommittees is comprised of UMSOM faculty including Miriam Laufer, MD, Professor of Pediatrics at the Center for Vaccine Development and Global Health and Associate Dean of Student Research and Education, Nadia Sam-Agudu, MD, Associate Professor of Pediatrics and Senior Technical Advisor of Pediatric HIV at the Institute of Human Virology, Alash’le Abimiku, PhD, Professor of Medicine at the Institute of Human Virology and Director of the International Research Center of Excellence IHV-Nigeria, Nicaise Ndembi, MSc, PhD, Adjunct Associate Professor of Medicine at the Institute of Human Virology, Patrick Dakum, MBBS, MPH, Associate Professor of Epidemiology & Public Health at the Institute of Human Virology and CEO of IHV-Nigeria, Kristen Stafford, PhD, MPH, Associate Professor of Epidemiology & Public Health at the Institute of Human Virology and Deputy Director of Ciheb, and Yolanda Ogbolu, PhD, CRNP, Associate Professor of Nursing, as well as faculty from partner institutions. Their guidance will support recruitment and selection of the scholars to launch these emerging leaders into global health research.
“I am both pleased and proud that the University of Maryland School of Medicine will play such a valuable role in training the next generation of global health researchers,” said E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA, Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs, University of Maryland Baltimore, and the John Z. and Akiko K. Bowers Distinguished Professor and Dean at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. “The leadership, mentorship, and impact our faculty and institution will impart will leave a legacy of influence felt worldwide.”
For more information on INSIGHT or to apply, please visit the INSIGHT Fogarty Scholars webpage.
About the Institute of Human Virology
Formed in 1996 as a partnership between the State of Maryland, the City of Baltimore, the University System of Maryland, and the University of Maryland Medical System, the IHV is an institute of the University of Maryland School of Medicine and is home to some of the most globally-recognized and world-renowned experts in all of virology. The IHV combines the disciplines of basic research, epidemiology, and clinical research in a concerted effort to speed the discovery of diagnostics and therapeutics for a wide variety of chronic and deadly viral and immune disorders, most notably HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. For more information, visit ihv.org and follow us on Twitter @IHVmaryland.
About the University of Maryland School of Medicine
Now in its third century, the University of Maryland School of Medicine was chartered in 1807 as the first public medical school in the United States. It continues today as one of the fastest growing, top-tier biomedical research enterprises in the world -- with 46 academic departments, centers, institutes, and programs, and a faculty of more than 3,000 physicians, scientists, and allied health professionals, including members of the National Academy of Medicine and the National Academy of Sciences, and a distinguished two-time winner of the Albert E. Lasker Award in Medical Research. With an operating budget of more than $1.3 billion, the School of Medicine works closely in partnership with the University of Maryland Medical Center and Medical System to provide research-intensive, academic and clinically based care for nearly 2 million patients each year. The School of Medicine has nearly $600 million in extramural funding, with most of its academic departments highly ranked among all medical schools in the nation in research funding. As one of the seven professional schools that make up the University of Maryland, Baltimore campus, the School of Medicine has a total population of nearly 9,000 faculty and staff, including 2,500 students, trainees, residents, and fellows. The combined School of Medicine and Medical System (“University of Maryland Medicine”) has an annual budget of over $6 billion and an economic impact of nearly $20 billion on the state and local community. The School of Medicine, which ranks as the 8th highest among public medical schools in research productivity (according to the Association of American Medical Colleges profile) is an innovator in translational medicine, with 606 active patents and 52 start-up companies. In the latest U.S. News & World Report ranking of the Best Medical Schools, published in 2021, the UM School of Medicine is ranked #9 among the 92 public medical schools in the U.S., and in the top 15 percent (#27) of all 192 public and private U.S. medical schools. The School of Medicine works locally, nationally, and globally, with research and treatment facilities in 36 countries around the world. Visit medschool.umaryland.edu