What is ITERT?
ITERT is an advanced education and training (E&T) core platform housed at the Translational Molecular Pathology (TMP) department, at MD Anderson Cancer Center. ITERT stands for Interdisciplinary Translational Education and Research Training, and is a service dedicated to providing career stage-specific training in academic and related disciplines of translational oncology research.
Who does ITERT serve?
- Graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, research investigators, college‐and high‐school students, staff and junior faculty at MD Anderson
- Visiting medical students/fellows at TMP (international)
- Undergraduate summer students at MD Anderson (from across the United States)
- Trainees from across the Texas Medical Center
Our goal is to ensure that our trainees and staff are best prepared to lead successful professional careers in academia and other related fields in translational cancer science. We aim to achieve this by trainee‐centered programming that includes leadership development, and evolves with continual improvement through assessment and feedback. Our programing is a three‐pronged approach uniquely geared to meet the diverse training needs of our students, fellows, and staff:
1) Research education
2) Career development
3) Supportive learning community
This three‐pronged training focus allows candidates an in‐depth research experience in translational cancer research, as well as tailored professional development opportunities, in an environment designed to foster a sense of community and make learning fun. At ITERT, we also promote the academic talents and leadership capabilities of junior faculty and staff. ITERT provides the foundational framework of education‐ and career‐support for extramural training grants at TMP, such as NCI-T32 and NCI-U24 and individual investigator NIH-R01s. We embrace and celebrate diversity, and foster a mentored team‐approach to pathful research in the pursuit of cancer cures.
The ITERT Model of E&T: ITERT is rooted in providing impactful mentorship, and a sense of community to our students, fellows and staff. The program currently supports ~100 trainees and staff (at various career stages) and aims to offer a strong platform for advanced scientific training required for careers in translational cancer science. At the heart of education and training at ITERT is the passionate commitment and service of TMP faculty, actively supported by the administrative staff.
Education and Training at ITERT
Dr. Rama Soundararajan, ITERT Director
ITERT Career Path Seminar Series
ITERT Annual Science Fair (Outreach)
ITERT Work-Life Harmony Series
ITERT Undergraduate Summer Research Program Awardees
ITERT Celebrating International Diversity
TMP Trainees Networking with Distinguished Speaker (Dr. McAllister)
Rama Soundararajan, Ph.D.
Krishna Bhat, Ph.D.
Ebonie R. Hatfield
ITERT Summer Undergraduate Research Program Poster winners!
Camille Abaya - 1st Place - Kadara Lab
Jonathan Kim - 2nd Place - Yao Lab
Vishy Rao - 3rd Place - Duose Lab
Jay Mehta - 1st Place - Solis-Soto Lab
Silmi Merchant - 1st Place - Mani Lab
No winners declared - Cancelled due to COVID pandemic.
Invited talks by distinguished scientists and industrial leaders to inform trainees about alternate career paths in biomedical science.
Leads: Dr. Rama Soundararajan and Dr. Krishna P. Bhat
Annual Science Fair, Trainee Socials, Celebrating Diversity in Biomedical Research Workforce, Women in Biomedical Research, Coffee Sessions
Leads: ITERT Trainees & Humberto Shaw
Research-in-progress talks by trainees – this forum provides trainees an opportunity to present their ongoing work at length, to improve presentation skills, and to receive real-time feedback from faculty and peers. This platform also engages
technology- and core-service providers from across MD Anderson, the TMC and U.S.
Leads: Dr. Simone Anfossi, Dr. Linda Fabris
Monthly seminars delivered by invited speakers who are leading authorities in Translational Science.
Leads: Dr. Krishna Bhat, Dr. Larry Kwong, Dr. Kanishka Sircar, Dr. Francisco Vega and Dr. Vashisht Yennu Nanda
Offers trainees a structured interactive environment to learn about invited speakers at TMP, their career tracks, scientific endeavors, and strategies for successfully navigating the academic track.
Leads: ITERT Postdoctoral Fellows
A biweekly, year-round training platform designed to aid fellows and students keep up with current literature, promote appraisal skills, promote participation/researchanalysis/ review skills, and offer trainees an in-depth exposure to study designs and model systems used in translational research. This forum includes career counseling sessions (drafting IDPs and personalized career plans).
Schedule: Biweekly, year-round
Organizers: Dr. Rama Soundararajan
A formal leadership training course – “ITERT-Emerging Leaders Academy” based on the acclaimed “Kouzes and Posner” leadership model. This is conducted in collaboration with the Leadership Institute at MD Anderson.
Lead: Dr. Rama Soundararajan
ITERT Remote Learning Services is an online learning platform launched with the goal of providing supportive educational resources and continued career‐skills training for our students and fellows, during COVID-19 and beyond. These include Grant Writing workshops, Buddy Mentoring, Career Enhancement Resources‐Strategies for successfully navigating science and academia, “Programming for data analyses” training course, “Fundamental histology for basic scientists” training course, and video lectures of ITERT Technical Workshop Series (the goal of this series is to educate research‐ and clinicaltrainees on emerging translational paradigms in cancer, beginning with risk assessment, early detection, surveillance and prevention of cancer, and ending with late‐stage disease, metastasis and survivorship).
Leads: Dr. Luisa Maren Soto, Dr. Gabriela Raso, Dr. Kathuri Kannan, Dr. Krishna Bhat, Dr. Humam Kadara, Dr. Vashisht Yennu Nanda, Dr. Rama Soundararajan
ITERT hosts a competitive hands-on summer learning experience for highly motivated undergraduates aspiring for a career in translational science.
For more information see ITERT Undergraduate Summer Research Training.
ITERT Summer Program Leads:
Dr. Rama Soundararajan
Associate Professor, Translational Molecular Pathology
Dr. Mario Piubelli
Assistant Professor, Translational Molecular Pathology
Dr. Khalida Wani
Laboratory Manager, Translational Molecular Pathology
Dr. Vashisht Yennu Nanda
Associate Professor, Translational Molecular Pathology
Career development resources for students and postdoctoral fellows.
Leads: Dr. Rama Soundararajan & Dr. Ignacio Wistuba
Ignacio Wistuba, M.D., is the chair of the Translational Molecular Pathology department and professor in the Thoracic/Head and Neck Medical Oncology department. He came to MD Anderson in 2003 and developed a translational research program in lung cancer that has expanded into the current TMP programmatic effort.
Gabriele Romano, Ph.D., is a postdoctoral fellow in the Translational Molecular Pathology Department. Gabriele's research is focused on the study of molecular mechanisms involved in cancer drug resistance and identification of effective counter-therapies.
ITERT Resident Photographer - Creating Education & Training Memories at ITERT.
Sridevi Addanki, Postdoc, 2018-Present | ResearchGate
Neus Bota, Postdoc, 2015-Present | LinkedIn
Hitoshi Dejima, Postdoc, 2018-2019
Daniela Duenas, Postdoc, 2019
Antoneicka L. Harris, Postdoc, 2018-Present | LinkedIn
Daisy Izaguirre, Postdoc, 2017-2019 | LinkedIn
Debora Alejandra Ledesma, Postdoc, 2018-Present | LinkedIn
Mehvish Naseer, Grad student, 2019
Joanne Speer, Senior Research Histology Tech, 2015-Present
Iris Stuiver, Grad student, 2019 | LinkedIn
Alex Trevarton, Postdoc, 2017-Present