TARRYTOWN, N.Y., Aug. 01, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: REGN) today announced the winners of the 11th annual Regeneron Prize for Creative Innovation, a competition designed to honor exceptional talent and originality in biomedical research. Each year, Regeneron invites the nation’s top research universities to nominate up-and-coming postdoctoral fellows and graduate students to pitch their "dream projects" within the field of biomedical science. Applicants outline the potentially groundbreaking research they would pursue given unrestricted access to resources and state-of-the-art technology, with finalists presenting their proposals to a committee of Regeneron’s scientific leaders.
This year's winner in the postdoctoral fellow category, as selected by the committee to receive a first prize of $50,000, is Samuel Barlow, Ph.D., of the University of Maryland, Baltimore.
In a decision reflecting the exceptional talent pool of this year's applicants, the committee has, for the first time, selected co-winners in the graduate student category. The projects from Casey Mogilevsky of University of Pennsylvania and Thaís Klevorn of Weill Cornell Graduate School of Medical Sciences stood out for their remarkable originality and innovation, compelling the committee to equally acknowledge both. Casey and Thaís will be honored as co-recipients of the prize in the graduate student category, with each receiving $25,000.
Additionally, five finalists were awarded $5,000 each, and each of the winners’ institutions received a $5,000 grant, resulting in $140,000 distributed in total. These funds aim to further catalyze groundbreaking scientific research among the winners, finalists and their respective institutions.
“These dynamic young thinkers and their visionary projects have impressed us with their ingenuity, brilliance and optimism,” said George D. Yancopoulos, M.D., Ph.D., Board Co-Chair, President and Chief Scientific Officer of Regeneron. “The Regeneron Prize recognizes and rewards creativity as a bedrock of impactful science. The winners and finalists have the passion and ability to think big and push boundaries, giving us confidence that the next generation will use the power of science to help solve the major challenges facing society today.”
Dr. Barlow is a neuroscientist at University of Maryland, Baltimore who is interested in how neurons in the brain communicate with one another at specialized connections called “synapses.” His work is providing a new understanding of how synaptic communication works normally and will help reveal which aspects of this process might be dysfunctional in patients with schizophrenia. He is currently a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Thomas A. Blanpied, Ph.D.
Mr. Mogilevsky is a first year M.D./Ph.D. student at the University of Pennsylvania who is just beginning his path to becoming a physician-scientist, which made his presentation envisioning a new way to deliver proteins and other agents that can modify DNA even more impressive. Casey earned an MPhil in Chemistry at the University of Cambridge, and a BS in Chemical Biology and Bioengineering at UC Berkeley.
Ms. Klevorn is a sixth year Ph.D. candidate in Immunology and Microbial Pathogenesis at Weill Cornell Graduate School of Medical Sciences. Her proposal was focused on a process called “innate immune memory,” which concerns how the immune system remembers inflammatory events long after they have occurred and thus elicits an altered cellular response to subsequent inflammatory insult. She’s particularly interested in studying this process in the brain during infection with the bacteria Borrelia burgdorferi, the causative agent of Lyme disease.
"Now in its 11th year, I’m proud that the Regeneron Prize has continued to nurture a spirit of innovative thinking among scientists at the dawn of their careers," said David Glass, M.D., Vice President of Research and Chair of the Postdoctoral Program at Regeneron. "The research our winners presented is merely the tip of the iceberg in terms of the positive, transformative impact these young talents will one day offer the world. I commend their hard work and eagerly anticipate seeing their future breakthroughs."
Requests for applications are distributed to academic institutions each December. Regeneron asks institutions to nominate two graduate students and two postdoctoral fellows. In addition to the dream project proposals, submissions must include a curriculum vitae and samples of publications that enable the selection committee to review each nominee's scholarly productivity. For more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Regeneron (NASDAQ: REGN) is a leading biotechnology company that invents life-transforming medicines for people with serious diseases. Founded and led for 35 years by physician-scientists, our unique ability to repeatedly and consistently translate science into medicine has led to nine FDA-approved treatments and numerous product candidates in development, almost all of which were homegrown in our laboratories. Regeneron’s medicines and pipeline are designed to help patients with eye diseases, allergic and inflammatory diseases, cancer, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, hematologic conditions, infectious diseases and rare diseases.
Regeneron believes that operating as a good corporate citizen is crucial to delivering on our mission. We approach corporate responsibility with three goals in mind: to improve the lives of people with serious diseases, to foster a culture of integrity and excellence and to build sustainable communities. Regeneron is proud to be included on the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index and the Civic 50 list of the most “community-minded” companies in the United States. Throughout the year, Regeneron empowers and supports employees to give back through our volunteering, pro-bono and matching gift programs. Our most significant philanthropic commitments are in the area of science education, including the Regeneron Science Talent Search and Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair.
For additional information about the company, please visit www.Regeneron.com or follow @Regeneron on Twitter.