May 2022
Sanford Burnham Prebys hosts inaugural Rising Stars Symposium

“I had an exceptionally memorable experience,” says Rising Star Myron Keith Gibert Jr., a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Virginia. 

Sanford Burnham Prebys recently hosted the first-ever Rising Stars Symposium, a three-day postdoctoral recruitment event that provided professional development, leadership training, networking opportunities and mentorship sessions for12 early-career researchers. Participants were selected based on their academic achievements and research scholarship. 

“It was an honor to host our inaugural Rising Stars!“ says Angelica Rocha, Ph.D., diversity officer at Sanford Burnham Prebys. Rocha adds, “They are emerging scientific leaders from across the country who impressed us with their work and inspired us with their dedication to equity and inclusion. I would be ecstatic if they joined our Institute.”


Sanford Burnham Prebys researchers including Carl Ware, Ph.D., and John Šedý, Ph.D., discovered an immunological process in the gut that could help improve treatment for autoimmune and gastrointestinal diseases. The study, published in Cell Reports, found that this process regulates the activation of white blood cells in the intestines, which ultimately helps the body control the composition of the gut microbiome. 

The immune system is unimaginably complex, and understanding it gives us the ability to manipulate it, and that can help us treat diseases,” says Šedý. “This discovery is a step forward in that larger narrative.” 

Without this protein, tuberculosis is powerless

A new study from the lab of Francesca Marassi, Ph.D., could help reveal new treatments for one of the world’s deadliest pathogens.

The research, published in Nature Communications, sheds light on an unusual metabolic system in tuberculosis, which could help yield new treatments for the disease and help make existing therapies more effective.

“This seems to be the first piece of evidence that there is a single protein in this system that could be targeted by a new class of tuberculosis drugs,says James Kent, a Ph.D. candidate working in Marassi’s lab.


Jerold Chun, M.D., Ph.D., has been awarded a new grant for $250,000 from the Coins for Alzheimer’s Research Trust (CART) Fund, an initiative by Rotary International to encourage exploratory and developmental Alzheimer’s research projects. Chun’s two-year project will explore how virus-like elements in our DNA could play a role in the development of Alzheimer’s disease.

We are so grateful for the support of CART and the Rotarians,” says Chun. “They’ve shown over the years that small contributions to Alzheimer’s research can add up to make a huge impact.”

Sanford Burnham Prebys completes major renewable energy upgrades
Energy is one of the most important resources we have, and a critical part of supporting the Institute’s biomedical research is making sure our facilities can use and maintain that resource sustainably,” says John Reed, director of facilities at Sanford Burnham Prebys. “If we can benefit employees in the process by giving them access to electric car charging and saving them some gas money, that’s just a bonus.” 

Sanford Burnham Prebys recently completed a sweeping round of solar energy upgrades, including the installation of 1,690 solar panels, and 50 car charging stations, which are now available for employee use. These upgrades, which also include the implementation of new power storage infrastructure, are the latest in a series of major sustainability projects spearheaded by Sanford Burnham Prebys over the last two decades.  

Padres Pedal the Cause 2022: Team Sanford Burnham Prebys raises more than $21,000 for cancer research
Sanford Burnham Prebys hit the pavement as part of Padres Pedal the Cause, an annual event that invites participants to cycle, spin, run or walk to support local cancer research. This year’s team was small but mighty, raising more than $21,000 to fund collaborative cancer research projects in the San Diego area.
Including the money raised by the Sanford Burnham Prebys team, Padres Pedal the Cause has raised more than $2.8 million this year. These funds will be distributed as grants to support collaborations between six participating research organizations: the Salk Institute, Scripps Research, Rady Children’s Hospital, UC San Diego, the La Jolla Institute, as well as Sanford Burnham Prebys.

Please Donate
Join us

Please join Sanford Burnham Prebys as a partner in discovery. Our world-class research programs are dedicated to finding cures for human disease to help individuals and their families. Your gift helps our scientists advance medical research to save lives.