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Translational Medicine

LOCATION: Ruby Memorial Hospital Anatomic and Clinical Pathology Laboratories; Pathology Laboratory for Translational Medicine; Various International Hospital Anatomic Pathology Laboratories
PRECEPTOR: James E. Coad, MD
DURATION: 4 weeks
OFFERED: Upon approval by preceptor (WVU medical students only)
STATUS: Elective


  1. Gain experience in how pathology impacts the transitioning of new discoveries/ideas into future medical practice;
  2. Develop an understanding of human subject regulations as they relate to translational medicine development;
  3. Develop an understanding of Good Clinical and Laboratory Practice (GCP/GLP) regulations related to translational medicine and pathology;
  4. Gain experience in how new and evolving techniques are being applied to patient care and diagnosis (hematopathology applications of genomics and flow cytometry/proteomics);
  5. Gain experience in how surgical pathology is practiced in the United States compared to foreign countries.

Expectations and Responsibilities

  1. Active participation in the processing, handling and evaluation of specimens both within the translational medicine and clinical laboratories under the supervision of faculty, residents, and staff.
  2. Active participation in the Department of Pathology training conferences and laboratory rounds.
  3. Initiate appropriate gathering of medical history, archival material and literature on specimens specifically assigned to the student for follow through in the laboratory.
  4. Articulate a basic understanding of how the US medical system works compared to that of the international site visited.
  5. Ability to function within the medical team and contribute to its workflow.
  6. Demonstrate appropriate medical knowledge for the patient and laboratory specimens evaluated. Succinctly outline an appropriate differential diagnoses for the specimens evaluated.
  7. Demonstrate appropriate professionalism and conduct while on the elective.

Examination Procedures and Evaluation Criteria

The student will be primarily evaluated on the basis of attendance, performance, participation and interest as evaluated by the faculty and staff mentors working with the student (i.e., being an engaged learner). The student will satisfactorily complete a tutorial on human subject's regulations and on good clinical/laboratory practice regulations.

Pre-Rotation Instructions

Contact Dr. Coad before signing up for elective, and two weeks prior to rotation start date. jcoad@hsc.wvu.edu / (304) 293 - 1614