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2004 NIDCD PECASE Award Winners

July 20, 2005

The NIDCD is pleased to announce that two of its grantees have received the prestigious Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) for 2004. This award, established in 1996, is the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. government on outstanding scientists and engineers at the beginning of their careers. Eight federal departments and agencies nominated young scientists and engineers who show exceptional promise for leadership in science and technology. This year, 58 researchers were honored with the award.

Photo of Dr. KrimmRobin F. Krimm, Ph.D.

Dr. Krimm, an assistant professor in the Department of Anatomical Sciences and Neurobiology at the University of Louisville, Kentucky, received an award for her achievements in chemosensory research. This work on the development of the peripheral taste system has received recognition in her field as the 2005 recipient of the Ajinomoto Award for young investigators in gustation. Dr. Krimm uses genetically modified mice to examine factors that regulate developmental interactions between taste buds and neurons. Dr. Krimm has found that certain growth factors, or neurotrophins, are required for nerve cells to correctly target taste buds during development. This research has important implications for the potential therapeutic use of growth factors in nerve regeneration following injury or disease. In addition to her research, Dr. Krimm also serves as a mentor to graduate, undergraduate and high school students in her laboratory. Dr. Krimm earned her doctorate degree in neuroscience at the University of Virginia in 1996 and performed postdoctoral work at the University of Kentucky from 1997-2001. Read more about Dr. Krimm’s research at http://www.louisville.edu/medschool/anatomy/rkrimm/.

Photo of Dr. NicolsonTeresa A. Nicolson, Ph.D.

Dr. Nicolson is an associate professor at the Oregon Hearing Research Center with a joint appointment at the Vollum Institute of the Oregon Health and Science University. Leaders in the field of vertebrate mechanosensation credit Dr. Nicolson with making groundbreaking discoveries that contributed to the understanding of how sound waves are converted into electrical impulses in the zebrafish ear. This organism allows Dr. Nicolson to use genetic methods that probe the molecular basis of hearing common to many species, including the human ear. In addition to conducting research, Dr. Nicolson hosts students in her laboratory as part of the Advocates for Women in Science, Engineering and Mathematics program. Dr. Nicolson received her Ph.D. in biological chemistry from the University of California, Los Angeles in 1995 and performed postdoctoral work at the Max-Planck Institute from 1995-1998.

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