Grad student's work ethic pays off in NIH award

Grad student's work ethic pays off in NIH award

Brittany Williams portrait

Brittany Williams

Brittany Williams, a student in the University of Iowa’s Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Neuroscience, received a National Research Service Award from the National Institutes of Health, earning a perfect score from the NIH review committee on her grant application in the process.

The NIH awarded a three-year grant of $28,471 to the UI to fund Williams’ research project, “Characterization of a Human Cav1.4 Splice Variant.” The award will cover Williams’ stipends, tuition and fees, and institutional allowance (health insurance, research supplies, etc.).

Williams proposes to provide a further understanding of how calcium channels are regulated, specifically how alternative splicing of Cav1.4 may contribute to visual signaling in the retina.

“There are several mutations in Cav1.4 that cause visual impairments. How Cav1.4 works compared to other family members is not really known,” Williams says. “It’s like a big puzzle with a bunch of missing pieces.”

Williams is the second UI neuroscience student to receive a perfect score in the last five years. In 2010, Rupa Gupta also achieved a 1.0 score on her grant application.

The National Research Service Awards (NRSA) are a family of grants provided by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for training researchers in the behavioral and health sciences.

Read more about Williams on the UI Graduate College website.

Contacts: 

John Riehl, Graduate College, 319-384-1309

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