Research Tracks

Yale Investigative Neurology Program (YINP)

It is becoming increasingly recognized that many talented potential clinician scientists do not return to research following the long hiatus (six years or more in many cases) during clinical training. We in the Yale Neurology Residency Program recognize this problem and are strongly committed to developing the careers of trainees who are interested in academic neurology. Therefore we offer the Yale Investigative Neurology Program (YINP), a unique training opportunity through the National Residency Matching Program (NRMP).

Two YINP positions are offered each year. These positions are designed for the rare candidate who has both extensive research experience (typically a PhD or equivalent) and a clear vision for what he/she will accomplish during his/her academic career. These candidates match into a streamlined program that:

1) cohesively integrates research training with clinical residency training
2) allows early access to potential research mentors with up to four months of elective time in the intern (PGY-1) year
3) provides at least nine months of elective time during PGY-3 and PGY-4 years
4) provides an additional twelve months of research time in a PGY-5 year if desired
5) provides personalized mentorship throughout the training program to assist the candidate in developing an independent research program.  

We view competing successfully for career development funding (eg. NIH K-series award) as an essential stepping stone on the path to an independent clinician-scientist career, and as such set this as an unofficial goal for YINP participants. We believe that, as currently designed, this program is a one-of-a-kind opportunity for the right candidate.

Clinical Neuroscientist Training Program (CNSTP)

All residents in the Neurology Residency Program at Yale are encouraged to engage in research and other academic pursuits. For those that do not match into the YINP, there are at least two additional pathways for research pursuits. The first opportunity is through our NIH funded R25 program, the Yale Clinical Neuroscientist Training Program (CNSTP). The CNSTP allows up to 24 months of protected research time, with at least six months completed during residency (PGY-4 year) and the remainder completed during post-residency research fellowship. Candidates for the CNSTP are selected on a competitive basis at the beginning of the PGY-3 year. Proposals from these candidates are submitted to NIH in October of the PGY-3 year for final determination of funding.

Research during elective time

The second option is to simply identify a mentor and pursue research during the six months of elective time allotted to all residents during the PGY-3 and PGY-4 years. With proper motivation and mentorship, a great deal can be accomplished with this time.

Regardless of the research path one takes, our goal is to provide opportunities for academic advancement for all interested residents. Our intention is to facilitate the process, but not to “cut corners” in clinical training. Therefore, continued participation in any research endeavors requires remaining in good standing in the clinical portion of the residency program. If there is any concern that a resident is not successfully meeting the requirements of the residency program, then research endeavors must be put on hold, and the resident will be provided the necessary assistance to get back on track.

Research Seminar Series

The purpose of the Research Seminar Series is to provide direct feedback to YINP and CNSTP trainees, and other neurology residents and fellows on their research projects and grant proposals. For the 2013-14 academic year, these meetings will take place on the fourth Thursday of the month in the LCI-9 conference room.  These seminars are attended by Drs. Hafler, Greer and Buchanan, other research faculty, research mentors, resident/fellow members of the YINP and CNSTP, and other interested individuals. The talks are organized to provide feedback to the trainee that is appropriate for his/her level of training. These seminars are directed and coordinated by Dr. Buchanan.

  • PGY2 Residents – Research Plan
  • PGY3 Residents – Research Progress
  • PGY4 Residents – Specific Aims for career development award 
  • Fellows – Specific Aims for career development award (if resubmission is needed)

Residents and Alumni

Current research path residents and fellows

  • Imran Quraishi, MD, PhD – PGY-5 (Mentor: Len Kaczmarek, PhD; R25 funded) 
  • Matthew Kalp, MD, PhD – PGY-4 (Mentor: Stephen Strittmatter, MD, PhD; R25 funded)
  • Matthew Schrag MD, PhD – PGY-3 (Mentor: Shawn Ferguson, PhD; R25 funded) 
  • Emmanuelle Schindler, MD, PhD – PGY-2 (Mentor: Cyril D’Souza, PhD)

Alumni

  • 2012: Haakon B. Nygaard, MD, PhD: Assistant Professor, Yale School of Medicine (Co-PI NIH UH2 grant)
  • 2012: Nandakumar Narayanan , MD, PhD: Assistant Professor, University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine (NINDS K08 awarded)
  • 2011: Gordon F. Buchanan, MD, PhD: Assistant Professor, Yale School of Medicine (NINDS K08 awarded)
  • 2010: Dongming Cai, MD, PhD: Assistant Professor, Mount Sinai Medical Center (NIA K08 & VA CDA2 awarded)
  • 2008: Christopher B. Ransom, MD, PhD: Assistant Professor, University of Washington / Puget Sound VA (VA CDA2 awarded)
  • 2006: Tanya Z. Fischer, MD, PhD: Assistant Professor, Yale School of Medicine (VA CDA2 awarded)