Dermatology Clinical Research Fellowship

Clinical Research Fellowship

Fellowship Director: Thomas Knackstedt, MD

Fellowship Administrator: Jennifer Seamon, Program Manager

Number of Fellows Accepted Per Year: 1

Length of Program: 1 Year

Program Goals and Objectives

The Dermatology Clinical Research Fellow Program at MetroHealth Medical Center provides a one year in-depth experience in clinical research related to dermatology with a focus on dermatologic oncology to train research fellows to become independent investigators in either academics or industry, through high-level mentorship, seminars, journal clubs, research fellowship infrastructure and laboratory training.

The goals of the fellowship are:

  • To develop skills in the evaluation, management and prevention of dermatologic diseases, and data analysis
  • To gain experience with these diseases in the clinical research (practice) setting
  • To develop effective interpersonal and communication skills with study patients, their families, members of the research staff, and pharmaceutical sponsors in the clinical research setting
  • To become familiar with regulations at the Federal and State level that govern current approaches and tools for conducting clinical trials
  • To develop an understanding of the drug development process, and Good Clinical Practices
  • To develop skills in the planning, implementation, and conduct of clinical trials

Program Overview

The MetroHealth Medical Center Department of Dermatology Clinical Research Fellow Program offers clinical research experience tailored to the needs of the fellow. Working with academic clinicians, the fellow will gain clinical skills that will serve them and their patients in the future. The fellow will be under the tutelage of Dr. Thomas Knackstedt with rotating supervisory faculty in the dermatology clinic.

Sample clinical schedule:



Resident Clinic*

Clinic (nail clinic)








Clinic (or Mohs)

Clinic (or Mohs)




* 4 patients per half day of resident clinic
**If not otherwise specified, clinic = attending clinic 

The clinical fellow is expected to productively participate in the clinical research activities of the Department of Dermatology, is expected to publish at least one clinical research article during their fellowship and is expected to make at least one scientific presentation.

Following is a comprehensive, although not all-inclusive, list of responsibilities during the 1 year:

  • Act as sub- investigator for all departmental studies
  • Maintain retrospective and prospectively maintained research databases together with research support staff
  • Assist in recruitment, screening, and consenting of study patients
  • Perform the following list of procedures:
    • Physical examinations
    • Skin evaluations
    • Determine body surface area affected and utilize validated skin assessment tools (e.g. Psoriasis Area Skin Index [PASI], Eczema Area Skin Index [EASI]) under supervision
    • Perform shave and punch biopsies under supervision
    • Perform electrosurgery under supervision
    • Perform potassium hydroxide microscopic examination for fungi, patch testing, and phototherapy under supervision
    • Take medical photographs
  • Monitor study patient’s safety, drug efficacy and report all adverse events
  • Assist in writing investigator-initiated protocols
  • Assist in preparation of proposals to be submitted to our local IRB
  • Assist in preparation of manuscripts for publication in medical journals
  • Present study-related information at monthly departmental meeting, at pharmaceutical meetings and at national medical meetings

General Competencies

  • Fellow is expected to have a broad-based knowledge of biomedical, clinical, and research aspects of medicine and to demonstrate the application of this knowledge to activities within the research unit.
  • Fellow is expected to develop strong interpersonal and communication skills that maximize the effectiveness of their professional relationships with research patients, their families, and other members of the research staff.
  • Fellow is expected to acquire behavior that reflects a commitment to continuous professional development, ethical practice, and an understanding and sensitivity to diversity and a responsible attitude toward their research patients.
  • Fellow is expected to demonstrate an understanding of the drug development process and Good Clinical Practices.

Fellow Supervision

The Director and the Research Coordinator will assist and supervise the fellow in the acquisition of knowledge related to developing protocols for clinical research studies and utilizing methodology for measurement of clinical indicators, the proper conduct of observational and randomized clinical trials, and the appropriate data management.

Fellowship Requirements

  • MD/DO Degree
  • CV
  • 2 letters of recommendation
  • Scores from the USMLE Steps 1 and 2
  • USMLE Step 3 prior to start of fellowship
  • Ohio Medical license prior to the start date of the fellowship (July 1)
  • Completed or currently enrolled in an ACGME accredited PGY1 in emergency medicine, internal medicine, family medicine, general surgery, pediatrics, OB/GYN or transitional year program prior to starting this fellowship

How to Apply

Currently accepting applications for July 2021 start.

Accepting applications for July 2022 start date beginning March 19.

Please submit the application along with the above listed documents to:

Jennifer Seamon
Phone: 216-778-1180
Email: [email protected]

All interviews will be held virtually.

Download the application