The ACC/Merck Fellowship Program celebrated its 35th anniversary on April 2 during the ACC.16 Merck Awards Reception. This unique program has provided support to four fellows in training (FITs) seeking to launch careers in cardiovascular research. Over the past 35 years, Merck has generously offered almost 200 fellowships.
In selecting applications, proposals addressing cardiovascular disease and cardiometabolic disorders are encouraged, as well as proposals focusing on clinically relevant outcomes as a result of the metabolic syndrome, diabetes or obesity. Preference for one award is given to applicants focusing on disparities of care since despite increased attention to health disparities at the national, state and community levels, relatively little progress has been made in achieving the vision of eliminating racial and ethnic health disparities.
Congratulations to this year’s winners:
- Pritha P. Gupta, MD, University of California, Los Angeles – “Body Composition, Metabolic Indices and Outcomes in Heart Failure”
- Philip S. Hall, MD, University of California, San Francisco – “Uncovering Biologic Mechanisms that Link Recurrent Pregnancy Loss With Later Cardiovascular Disease in Women”
- Fatima Rodriguez, MD, Stanford University – “SALUD: Study of Disaggregated Latinos in the US to Address Disparities”
- Jainy Savla, MD, UT Southwestern – “The Role of Mechanical Unloading After Left Ventricular Assist Device Placement on Mitochondrial Metabolism”
The selected FITs are provided with $70,000 to support research in adult cardiology. The fellowships will be used for salary support, for one year of research to begin July 1, 2016 and run through June 30, 2017.
“Academic medicine is currently weathering unprecedented challenges, not least of which are constraints on financial resources stemming from cuts in clinical reimbursement, GME and research funding. And no one feels the financial pinch more than early career professionals, positioned at the interface between training and full independence,” says Joseph A. Hill, MD, PhD, chair of the Research Fellowship Awards Committee. “Novel partnerships between academia and industry serve as crucial lifelines for these capable, highly trained and professionally vulnerable individuals. Indeed, the storied 35-year leadership of Merck in supporting these professionals is truly impressive, fostering the career launch of well over 100 academic investigators,” he adds.
For more information, visit ACC.org/Merck.