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The award cycle for the 2017 Outstanding Early Investigator Award is now closed.
This award recognizes an outstanding research effort by an early-stage investigator in the field of sleep research. The basis for the evaluation of a candidate is a single peer-reviewed publication supported by a senior investigator’s letter of recommendation. The candidate must be the first author; and the article must have been published or been accepted for publication in the previous year.
The award consists of a plaque and a travel honorarium to be applied toward travel to SLEEP, the Annual Meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies. The plaque and honorarium will be presented at a ceremony at SLEEP 2017, during the SRS Club Hypnos Reception, Sunday evening in Boston, MA.
To be eligible, the candidate must:
Ada Eban-Rothschild, PhD
Ada Eban-Rothschild for the publication “VTA dopaminergic neurons regulate ethologically relevant sleep-wake Behaviors” published in Nature Neuroscience.
Ada Eban-Rothschild received her PhD from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem where she studied social influences on sleep and circadian rhythms, using bees as a model organism. For her post-doctoral training, Dr. Eban-Rothschild moved to Stanford University to work with Luis de Lecea investigating neuronal mechanisms underlying the association between motivational processes and sleep-wake regulation, in a mammalian model system. She has found that dopamine neurons of the ventral tegmental area are a critical link between motivational processes and sleep-wake regulation. Dr. Eban-Rothschild will soon start her own laboratory at the Department of Psychology at the University of Michigan. In her laboratory, Dr. Eban-Rothschild will continue to investigate neuronal mechanisms regulating sleep and behavior, combining state-of-the-art in vivo techniques to measure and manipulate specific neuronal circuits with an ethologically oriented methodology.
Keith Hengen PhD
Keith Hengen PhD for the publication "Neuronal Firing Rate Homeostasis Is Inhibited by Sleep and Promoted by Wake” published in Cell.
Keith Hengen, working under the mentorship of Dr. Mary Behan at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, received a Ph.D. in neuroscience in 2010 for a series of studies of GABA-A receptor plasticity in the brainstem of hibernators. Following his Ph.D., Keith pursued a postdoctoral fellowship in the laboratory of Dr. Gina Turrigiano at Brandeis University. In collaboration with Drs. Steve Van Hooser and Don Katz, Keith provided the first demonstration of firing rate homeostasis in the brains of freely behaving animals. This work indicated that individual neurons actively regulate spiking activity around a cell-autonomous set-point. When the activity of cortical pyramidal neurons is perturbed via a direct challenge (e.g. chronic sensory deprivation), the homeostatic plastic recovery is exclusively expressed during periods of active waking and inhibited during sleep states. Due to the computational necessity of firing rate homeostasis, these data suggest that an essential and mechanistically incompatible process is occurring during sleep. Keith plans to continue investigating the complex interactions of homeostatic plasticity mechanisms, arousal states, and the self-organization of neural networks in vivo. Keith recently started a new position as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biology at Washington University in St. Louis. Keith has been supported by an NRSA and subsequent K99/R00 from the National Institute of Neurological Disorder and Stroke.
Jason Gerstner, PhD, for the publication “Normal sleep requires the astrocyte brain-type fatty acid binding protein FABP7” published in Science Advances.
Jennifer C. Tudor, PhD, for the publication “Sleep deprivation impairs memory by attenuating mTORC1-dependent protein synthesis” published in Science Signaling.
Shirley Xin Li, PhD, DClinPsy, for the publication “Sleep Disturbances and Suicide Risk in an 8-Year Longitudinal Study of Schizophrenia-Spectrum Disorders “published in SLEEP.