Szpara Wins NIAID Research Scholar Development Award
Congratulations to Moriah Szpara, a postdoctoral fellow in Enquist lab. Moriah was awarded the prestigious NIAID Research Scholar Development Award (K22). The purpose of this program is to increase and maintain a strong cohort of new and talented NIH-supported independent investigators that will address the health needs of the Nation. NIAID is one of several NIH institutes that offer highly competitive K22 Career Transition Awards, which aim to facilitate the transition of a postdoctoral researcher to an independent faculty position.The goal of Moriah’s project, "Genetic determination of HSV-1 virulence in neurons", is to understand how pathogens interact with the host nervous system, and specifically to grasp what genetic features make a neurotropic pathogen more or less virulent. Herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1) is a widespread human pathogen that establishes latency in human neurons and reactivates repeatedly throughout a patient’s lifetime. HSV-1 is a leading cause of infectious blindness in the United States, and the main cause of sporadic, fatal encephalitis.