Biographical Sketch


Since its inception in 1985, the RCMI Program has been instrumental in shifting its parent institution, the Ponce School of Medicine (PSM), from being a traditional teaching school to being a vigorous research center. The institution has experienced substantial development, both of its human and its physical infrastructure. Along these lines, through the auspices of the RCMI Program, PSM has been able to acquire the state-of-the-art facilities and equipment as well as other resources that enable investigators to pursue competitive basic, clinical, and behavioral research. Retrovirology, HIV/AIDS, Molecular Biology, Human and Bacterial Genetics, Protein Chemistry and Enzymology, Immunology, Cancer Biology, and Epidemiology number among the new research areas that have arisen with the support of the RCMI Program.

Along with the direct improvements to the institution, faculty members are enhancing its and their reputations by increasing the number and quality of publications in peer-reviewed journals, the number of scientific presentations at competitive forums at the national and international levels, and the number of funded research and training initiatives.

During the current cycle (2008 to 2013), the RCMI Program will continue to improve its human and physical infrastructure so that the institution will be able accomplish the major goals and carry out the objectives contained in the Institutional Strategic Plan for Research. Particular emphasis will be placed on the development of both translational and health disparities research in Puerto Rico. The Program comprises four Core activities (Administration, AIDS Research Infrastructure Program, Molecular Biology, and Behavioral Neuroscience) and five Research Pilot Projects. The primary goals and objectives of the present competitive continuation application are:


  1. To foster the continued progress of RCMI Program activities by providing high-caliber administrative support.

  2. To implement a formal Faculty Mentoring Program to assist investigators in developing independent and competitive research careers.

  3. To strengthen faculty recruitment, development, and retention.

  4. To strengthen the HIV/AIDS Research Infrastructure Program and the Molecular Biology Core.

  5. To implement and further develop a Behavioral Neurosciences Core.

  6. To provide the necessary leadership and guidance for the development of five Research Pilot Projects to be presented by junior faculty.

  7. To implement a comprehensive evaluation program to provide continuous assessment of progress achieved by all RCMI Program activities.