Jacob Corn awarded the prestigious NIH “New Innovator” Grant

IGI Scientific Director of Biomedicine Jacob Corn has received the NIH Director’s New Innovator Award that provides $1.5 million over five years to pursue high-risk, high-reward work that could have implications for human health. The National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) High-Risk, High-Reward Research program, part of the NIH Common Fund, funded 86 awards to exceptionally creative scientists proposing to use highly innovative approaches to tackle major challenges in biomedical research.

Corn lab will use CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing to explore how cells recycle damaged organs, such as mitochondria. Dysfunction in organelle autophagy has been implicated in diverse diseases, including neurodegeneration, lysosomal storage disorders and cancer.  Corn lab will use next- generation CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing and regulation technologies, combined with cellular biochemistry and imaging to discover the pathways that signal for the remodeling and lysosomal degradation of multiple organelles.  Our work will reveal the mechanisms by which cells maintain organelle homeostasis and respond to organelle damage or stress, which could suggest new strategies to treat diseases associated with improper organelle autophagy.

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