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URMC / Labs / Majewska Lab / News




Majewska honored by NINDS for exceptional mentorship

Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Ania Majewska, Ph.D., has been named a 2022 Landis Award for Outstanding Mentorship awardee by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) for her dedication to superior mentorship and training in neuroscience research. Majewska is a professor of Neuroscience and principal investigator of the Majewska Lab at the University of Rochester Medical Center.

In 2021, Majewska was recognized for her outstanding mentorship – receiving the Peter Shrager Award for her successful leadership of the Neuroscience Graduate Program, dedication to science, and compassion. She was also named the Outstanding Graduate Program Director in 2020 by the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry. She is also one of the founding members of the Neuroscience Diversity Commission.

“This is a truly deserved honor. Ania has spent nearly two-decades dedicated to neuroscience and her students at the University,” said John Foxe, Ph.D., director of the Del Monte Institute for Neuroscience and chair of the Neuroscience Department. “Part of her success comes from uplifting those around her and holding others to the same standard. She is a true champion in the kind of mentorship that is needed at the bench to make sure there is equitability in science.”

 “Strong, effective mentorship is critical for preparing the next generation of neuroscientists to do outstanding, important science. With the Landis Award for Outstanding Mentorship, NINDS is recognizing the exceptional commitment of these six awardees to the growth and development, both scientific and professional, of their mentees. Moreover, these Landis awardees have been leaders and role models for fostering diversity of the scientific workforce, both through their individual mentorship and institutional activities that promote both recruitment and inclusion of a diverse population of trainees and faculty,” says Stephen Korn, Ph.D., director of the NINDS Office of Training and Workforce Development.

Majewska will receive $100,000 supplement for an existing NINDS grant to support her effort to foster the career advancement of additional trainees.

Rebecca Lowery Study Suggests Way to Restore Brain Immune System Function After Prenatal Exposure to Environmental Toxin

Tuesday, February 8, 2022

New research shows that exposure to the industrial byproduct TCDD in utero could cause the brain’s immune system to go array later in life, damaging important brain circuits, and potentially giving rise to neurodevelopmental disorders, such as autism and ADHD. TCDD is primarily released into the environment by vehicle exhaust and burning wood and low levels of the toxin are found in air, soil, and food. The most common way people are exposed is through meat, dairy, and fish.

In the same study, recently published in the journal Brain, Behavior, and Immunity, researchers also found that pharmacological manipulation could restore the function of microglia, important cells in the brain’s immune system. “This suggests that defects in microglia function resulting from prenatal exposures can be reversed later in life, indicating a possible additional therapeutic avenue for neurodevelopmental disorders,” said Rebecca Lowery, Ph.D., assistant research professor in the Del Monte Institute for Neuroscience at the University of Rochester, and co-first author of the study.

Read More: Rebecca Lowery Study Suggests Way to Restore Brain Immune System Function After Prenatal Exposure to Environmental Toxin