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NYU Cancer Institute researcher among first NIH EUREKA award recipients

New York City, NY September 3, 2008 - The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has awarded $42.2 million to fund 38 exceptionally innovative research projects that could have an extraordinarily significant impact on many areas of science. The grants, from a new program called EUREKA (for Exceptional, Unconventional Research Enabling Knowledge Acceleration), targets investigators who are testing novel, unconventional hypotheses or are pursuing major methodological or technical advances. Eureka researchers will receive direct costs of approximately $200,000 per year for up to four years.

Michelle Krogsgaard, Ph.D, assistant professor of pathology at the NYU Cancer Institute, is the first NYU School of Medicine recipient of the EUREKA award. In 2006, Dr. Krogsgaard joined NYU and her work has focused on the different signaling methods T-cells use in the contexts of cancer and autoimmune disease. The EUREKA award will allow Dr. Krogsgaard to explore the complex molecular mechanisms that govern the training and activation of immune cells; specifically, how intracellular signals are generated in T-cells, currently an immunological black box. Dr. Krogsgaard practices an interdisciplinary approach to her research, which incorporates cellular, chemical and structural biology techniques. Through this fresh perspective and multidisciplinary approach, Dr. Krogsgaard aims to build on her previous training to initiate a novel and risky approach to study mechanisms of T-cell signaling and to bolster her controversial hypothesis that structural changes in the receptor complex are important for T-cell signaling. This award will give her the freedom to explore innovative techniques and interdisciplinary approaches that would not be supported by an R01 award.

Using a combination of novel imaging and biophysical techniques, Dr. Krogsgaard investigates how one can manipulate signaling mechanisms in T-cells which could enhance the immune response in patients with HIV or cancer or diminish T-cell activation in patients with autoimmune disease.


Contact: Jennifer Berman
NYU Langone Medical Center / New York University School of Medicine

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