Research Training

Fellows become involved with research at the beginning of their training program, with at least fourteen blocks dedicated to research. Research projects, developed during the first and second years of training, are normally completed during the third year.

Clinical research opportunities are available in the fields of echocardiography, including transesophageal echocardiography, stress echocardiography and fetal echocardiography, body surface potential mapping, electrophysiology, and interventional cardiac catheterization. Extensive clinical research opportunities are available with other subspecialties in Pediatrics, and well as other departments within University Hospitals of Cleveland.

Basic science research opportunities are available in embryology, electrophysiology, interventional cardiac catheterization and biomedical engineering. Close cooperation with the Division of Adult Cardiology (Department. of Medicine), and the Departments of Genetics, and Physiology and Biophysics at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine provide fertile opportunities for basic science research.

Each fellow is required to take the institution's fellows course and a statistics course offered by the Department of Pediatrics. Computer skills for data analysis and presentations are an integral part of the program. The faculty mentor is responsible for regular and in depth review of the progress of the research. The preparation of grants and manuscripts is supervised by the faculty mentor and reviewed by the program director.

Supervision of the research experience is provided to the fellow throughout the training program, and is spearheaded by the trainee’s Scholarship Oversight Committee (SOC). During the first year of fellowship, the trainee will have a total of at least two months of research time. It is expected that the trainee, after having a broad exposure to inpatient and outpatient cardiology, will use the time to meet with prospective research mentors (basic science and/or clinical) and identify a research topic and mentor. The next step would be to meet with the research director, program director and the mentor to identify potential members of the SOC. It is expected that one to two additional faculty members, with expertise in either basic or clinical research (depending on the trainees chosen research topic) will also be members of the SOC. All committee members will be approved by research training director, who will obtain formal confirmation of the member’s willingness to participate for the entire duration of fellow’s training and to accept the appropriate responsibilities. The SOC will meet once during the first year, then every six months throughout the remainder of the fellowship, and more often if necessary. At each meeting, the trainee will be expected to present their work and also provide a written summary. At the completion of each session, the SOC will provide the program Director with a written summary of its recommendations, which the program Director will review with the trainee.

Review of Division Based Research Program

Dr. Michiko Watanabe's laboratory has been very active in the training of pediatric cardiology and adult cardiology fellows. She is NIH funded and has extensive collaborations in the pediatrics department, in various departments within the medical school, in the school of engineering and nationally. Her laboratory is in the new research floor of University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital. She has taken the role of directing the fellow research program within our division.

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