The third annual Cullen Trust for Higher Education Symposium on Translational Research will kick off Friday, Jan. 15 from 4-5:30 p.m. in Onstead Auditorium and foyer, 3rd floor, George and Cynthia Mitchell Basic Sciences Research Building (BSRB), 6767 Bertner St., Houston, Texas 77030. This symposium will highlight the outstanding translational research at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, and Baylor College of Medicine, and is open to all faculty, students and community friends.

Keynote speakers and topics are:

Huda Y. Zoghbi, M.D., investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute; professor, Departments of Pediatrics, Molecular and Human Genetics, Neurology and Neuroscience, BCM: Understanding the Pathogenesis of an Inherited Ataxia and the Relevance to Other Neurodegenerative Diseases.

John B. Holcomb, M.D., director Center for Translational Injury Research; professor of Surgery, UTHSCMS: Lessons Learned from the War.

In conjunction with the symposium, an M.D./Ph.D. Career Development Workshop will be held Saturday, Jan. 16, for current and prospective M.D./Ph.D. students.

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The Cullen Trust for Higher Education, under the chairmanship of Corbin (Corby) Robertson, Jr., made a gift of $1.115M over five years to support, strengthen, and grow the M.D./Ph.D. program at The University of Texas Health Science Center/M. D. Anderson Cancer Center (joint program), and Baylor College of Medicine.

This award provides the full stipend for selected incoming M.D./Ph.D. students each year at both programs during the medical training portion of their education. The magnitude of collaborative effort accomplished through this support is unlike anything heretofore organized in the Texas Medical Center, and provides an unprecedented level of intellectual resource available to students in the combined M.D./Ph.D. degree programs at each of these institutions.

As part of this grant and for the purpose of attracting the highest caliber undergraduates throughout the nation to the M.D./Ph.D. programs here, an annual research symposium is hosted jointly to feature outstanding translational researchers in the Texas Medical Center. This symposium exposes potential applicants from colleges and universities across the country to the exciting research in translational medicine being accomplished in the Texas Medical Center.

The 2009-2010 Cullen Trust for Higher Education M.D./Ph.D. Fellows are Stefanie Louise Alexander and Meagan Barry, Baylor College of Medicine, and Andrew Peters, University of Texas Health Science Center/M. D. Anderson Cancer Center.