June 14, 2017
LA JOLLA—The Pew Charitable Trusts announced today that Eiman Azim, an assistant professor in Salk’s Molecular Neurobiology Laboratory, is one of 22 researchers to be named a Pew Scholar in the Biomedical Sciences. Each scholar receives $240,000 over four years. Additionally, Azim is one of a subset of five Pew Scholars selected for support by the Kathryn W. Davis Peace by Pieces Fund, which focuses on investigating health challenges in the brain as it ages.
Azim, who in April 2017 was also named a Searle Scholar, explores the neural pathways that orchestrate skilled movements, using modern genetic tools in mice to identify how neural circuits in the brain and spinal cord control a diverse set of dexterous behaviors like reaching, grasping, climbing and eating.
By using an array of cutting-edge techniques in neurobiology, genetics and computer vision, Azim records from and selectively manipulates discrete classes of genetically accessible motor circuits, monitoring how these pathways are involved in different aspects of motor control. By using novel behavioral tools to gain a more comprehensive understanding of the neural basis of skilled motor output, Azim hopes to deepen understanding of how the nervous system controls movement, progress that could lead to approaches to restore function in motor circuits affected by injury or disease.
Pew’s 2017 scholars—all of whom hold assistant professor positions—join a thriving community of more than 900 biomedical scientists who have received awards from Pew since 1985. The scholars are chosen from nominations made by approximately 180 leading academic and research institutions. Each year, current scholars come together to discuss their research and learn from peers in fields outside of their own.
About the Salk Institute for Biological Studies:
Every cure has a starting point. The Salk Institute embodies Jonas Salk’s mission to dare to make dreams into reality. Its internationally renowned and award-winning scientists explore the very foundations of life, seeking new understandings in neuroscience, genetics, immunology, plant biology and more. The Institute is an independent nonprofit organization and architectural landmark: small by choice, intimate by nature and fearless in the face of any challenge. Be it cancer or Alzheimer’s, aging or diabetes, Salk is where cures begin. Learn more at: salk.edu.
About Pew Charitable Trusts:
The Pew Charitable Trusts is driven by the power of knowledge to solve today’s most challenging problems. We are an independent nonprofit organization—the sole beneficiary of seven individual trusts established between 1948 and 1979 by two sons and two daughters of Sun Oil Company founder Joseph N. Pew and his wife, Mary Anderson Pew.