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UR Medicine



The Experimental Therapeutics fellowship (NS-07338) at the University of Rochester is the only NIH funded fellowship specifically aimed at developing clinical researchers focused on neurotherapeutics in neurology. The program has been continuously funded since 1990 and since that time has trained over 80 fellows who are now at over 25 institutions. Virtually all fellows completing the program have secured grant funding as part of their training with many receiving multiple grants.

The fellowship, which can be completed in any field of neurology or clinical neuroscience, has four principal components:

  1. Experimental Therapeutics ModelClinical training – Trainees also receive excellent clinical training. The University of Rochester has national and international leaders in neuromuscular diseases, movement disorders, epilepsy, HIV, memory care, multiple sclerosis, neuro-oncology, neuro-critical care, palliative care, pain management, vascular neurology, pediatric neurology and global neurology.
  2. Coursework – Training in biostatistics, clinical trial design, bioethics, and grant writing, is tailored to the needs and interests of the Trainee.
  3. Experimental therapeutics – The heart of the fellowship is training and first-hand experience in experimental therapeutics, the design and conduct of clinical trials, funded by NIH, foundations, and industry. Trainees, depending on their interests, can work with investigators on designing first-in-human studies to translate therapies from animal models to humans, serve as site investigators, help plan phase III clinical trials, or all of the above.
  4. Independent research projects – Trainees may come with their own research projects that they want to continue, or during the course of their fellowship, develop new research interests. To help pursue these ideas, Trainees are mentored and expected to write their own grants. Trainees in the program have successfully competed for NIH career development (K) awards, American Brain Foundation fellowships, NIH Loan Repayment awards and foundation awards.

Typical Curriculum for ETND Trainee


Year 1

Year 2*






Advanced Certificate in Experimental Therapeutics

14-credit curriculum customized to Trainee’s career development needs

Mentored Research Project(s)

Mentored primary and collaborative research projects

Program-wide Meetings
Working Group on Clinical Research Bi-weekly meeting of faculty and trainees to discuss experimental therapeutics issues, particularly the design, performance and analysis of trainees’ clinical trial proposals; trainees present and receive feedback
Mellow Fellows Monthly seminar focused on trainees practicing oral presentation skills as they brainstorm new ideas with experienced investigators, biostatisticians, and each other
Career Development Seminar Monthly seminar focused on career development skills and mentoring for career guidance and opportunities
Invited Speakers for Quantitative Skills Biannual presentations; Annual Michael P. McDermott Lectureship in Experimental Therapeutics

Other Mentored Activities

Skills building for leadership, oral and written communication, diversity training

Mentored Grant Writing**

Prepare and submit next grant within 18 months

Annual T32 Workshop

Attend at least once during training

Clinical Activity

Subspecialty clinics aligned with research goals; usually 10-20% of effort.

Monitoring Progress