January 2017
Dear SBP Community,

Heading into the new year we have some exciting news to share. Associate Professor Malene Hansen, Ph.D., who holds the positions of faculty advisor of Postdoctoral Training and associate dean of Student Affairs, has received a Mentor Award from the National Postdoctoral Association. Hansen has been instrumental in developing the educational programs at SBP, and we are indeed proud of her achievements. 

On the science front, we share exciting discoveries in neuroscience from Huaxi Xu, Ph.D., and in immunology from Robert Rickert, Ph.D.

We are also pleased to announce a new grant from the William Randolph Hearst Foundation to Scott Peterson, Ph.D., to search for compounds that impact the microbiome, and NIH funding to Bret Goodpaster, Ph.D., to explore the fine details of how exercise benefits the body.

Especially exciting is SBP's recent ranking in the top 1.5 percent of biomedical research institutions by Thompson Reuters' Web of Science “Essential Science Indicators.” The ranking measures the impact of an institution’s research by counting the number of times their scientific publications are cited by other scientists. Congratulations to our faculty for helping us achieve this distinction.

Malene Hansen receives Mentor Award from National Postdoctoral Association

Malene Hansen, Ph.D., associate professor at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute (SBP), has been named the recipient of the 2017 Garnett-Powers & Associates, Inc. Mentor Award from the National Postdoctoral Association (NPA). Hansen is being honored for her “positive influence on postdoctoral training at San Diego institutions” and her “commitment to mentoring and service.”

Read more >> 

Research identifies a molecular basis for common congenital brain defect

Researchers in the lab of Huaxi Xu, Ph.D., have discovered a molecular cause of hydrocephalus, a common, potentially life-threatening birth defect in which excess fluid surrounds the brain. The study, published in the Journal of Neuroscience, may explain the increased risk for hydrocephalus in babies with Down syndrome.
Rickert lab reveals function of a pivotal protein impacting immunity

Robert Rickert, Ph.D., has published a paper in The Journal of Immunology that may open a new avenue for treating B cell lymphomas. Their research shows how preventing the activity of a protein called MALT1 has the potential to benefit some lymphoma patients.
Scott Peterson receives grant to discover gut microbiome-targeted therapies

Obesity, type 2 diabetes, Crohn’s disease and food allergies all have something in common—they are linked with increased inflammation and permeability of the intestine. Scott Peterson, Ph.D., has been awarded funding from the William Randolph Hearst Foundation to search for compounds  that affect the microbiome and improve intestinal health.
Bret Goodpaster to lead part of $170M NIH effort to understand the molecular effects of exercise

Everyone knows that physical activity is good for you, but we’re far from understanding the fine details of how exercise benefits us on cellular level. Bret Goodpaster, Ph.D., has been named co-leader of an NIH funded national consortium to construct a map of the molecular changes associated with exercise. The insights may lead to new approaches to treat the myriad of health issues associated with inactivity.
Welcome to our newest and recently renewed President's Circle Members!

• Elizabeth and Darryl Albertson
• Albireo Pharma, Inc.
• Sarah and Brian Bachman

• Rocio and Lorenzo Berho
• Betty and J.R.* Beyster

• Kathy and Ed Brown

• Sue and Howard Busby

• Pamela and Carl* Carter

• Mary and Adam Cherry

• Pamela and Keith Cox

• Christine Cunningham

• Michael R. Cunningham, Ph.D.

• Natalie and David Dragotto

• James and Nancy Eastman

• Rebecca and Edward Etess

• Jennifer and Kurt Eve

• Michiko and Minoru Fukuda

• Mary Ellen and Kieran Gallahue

• Gilbert J. Martin Foundation

• Marleigh and Alan Gleicher

• Anne-Marie Gordon

• Lynn Gorguze and Scott Peters

• William Randolph Hearst Foundation

• Margaret and Robert Hulter

• Louise and Raymond Knowles

• Victory and Richard Lareau

• Reinette S. Levine

• Marci and Ronald Morgan

• Bradley A. Morrice

• Bruce A. Morrice
• Jori H. Potiker
• Erin and Peter Preuss
• Nicole and Jim Reynolds
• Roger Mills and Linda Robertson
• Marilyn and Michael Rosen
• Mary and Harold Sadler
• Meredith and Richard Schoebel
• Julie and Costa Sevastopoulos
• Cynthia and Aaron Shenkman
• The Simon-Strauss Foundation
• Karen and Stuart Tanz
• Ann Hollister and Jonathan Thomas
• University of California, San Diego
• Kristiina Vuori, M.D., Ph.D.
• Mary Walshok
• Emma and Leo Zuckerman
“Chalk talks” foster community among San Diego stem cell researchers

The popular monthly scientific gatherings organized by Evan Snyder, M.D., Ph.D., director of the Center for Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine at SBP, are designed to promote conversation among basic researchers, clinicians, and representatives from biotech and pharma.
Rare Disease Day Symposium to focus on Alagille syndrome

This year's symposium is the first focusing on Alagille syndrome, a genetic disorder that causes abnormal development of the liver and heart that affects 1 in 30,000 infants. The event is scheduled for February 24 and will bring together scientists, clinicians and patients to foster efforts toward a cure.
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