CTSI Blog

CTSI welcomes 13 new scholars, recipients of career development awards for clinical and translational research

The Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI) is pleased to announce the recipients of 13 career development awards for clinical and translational scientists at the University of Minnesota. The awards are spread across four training programs designed to support junior investigators as they build independent research careers.

Please join us in congratulating these scholars!




New Investigator Pre-K Pilot Grant
$50,000 research funds and $2,000 travel funds over two years to submit a K award application.


Bernadette Gillick, PhD, MS, PT, Medical School
Primary Mentor: Kelvin Lim, MD
Project Title: Safety of Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation in Pediatric Hemiparesis

Gautam Jha, MBBS, MS, Medical School
Primary Mentor: Jeffrey Miller, MD
Project Title: Potentiation of Cetuximab by Tregs Depletion With Metronomic Cyclophosphamide in Metastatic Squamous Cell Cancers of Head and Neck


KL2 Scholars Program
75% salary support, $25,000 in research funds, and $1,000 in travel funds per year over three years to launch an independent research career.


Veronika Bachanova, MD, PhD, Medical School
Primary Mentor: Jeffrey Miller, MD
Project Title: Natural Killer Cell Immunotherapy for Lymphoma

Curtis Corum, PhD, Medical School
Primary Mentor: Michael Garwood, PhD
Project Title: Improved Breast MRI Utilizing SWIFT: Detection of Breast Calcifications with MRI and Correlation with Mammography

Hee Lee, PhD, College of Education and Human Development
Primary Mentor: Jasjit S. Ahluwalia, MD, MPH, MS

Project Title: Mobile Phone Multimedia Messaging Intervention for Breast Cancer Screening

K to R01 Transition Grant
$50,000 research funds over two years to submit an NIH R01 grant application.

Jason Baker, MD, MS, Medical School
Primary Mentor: James Neaton, PhD
Project Title: The Coagulopathy of HIV Infection

Julie Ostrander, PhD, Medical School 
Primary Mentor: Douglas Yee, MD
Project Title: PELP1 Localization as a Biomarker for Early Mammary Carcinogenesis and Response to Chemoprevention

Lynda Polgreen, MD, MS, Medical School
Primary Mentor: Chester Whitley, MD, PhD
Project Title: Cross-Sectional Study of Associations of Osteocalcin with Obesity, Insulin Resistance, Adipokines and Inflammation in the Mucopolysaccharidoses


2nd R01 Pilot Grant
Research funds up to $75,000 over two years to secure pilot data to submit a second, new NIH R01 grant.


Robert Cormier, PhD, Medical School, Duluth
Collaborators: Gerrit Meijer, PhD; Kevin Silverstein, PhD
Project Title: Discovery of Fusion Oncogenes in Colorectal Cancer

Joseph Gaugler, PhD, School of Nursing
Collaborator: Philippe Gaillard, PhD
Project Title: The Residential Care Transition Module: Pilot Evaluation

Reuben Harris, PhD, College of Biological Sciences and Medical School
Collaborators: Yen-Yi Ho, PhD
Project Title: Determining clinical correlates of Apobec3 over-expression in breast cancer

Susanta Hui, PhD, Medical School
Collaborators: Chap Le, PhD; Yan Zhang, MS
Project Title: Developing novel bio-markers to assess comprehensive bone loss in cancer patients

Janet Thomas, PhD, Medical School
Collaborators: Hongfei Guo, PhD; Jasjit S. Ahluwalia, MD, MPH, MS
Project Title: Exploring "Lose & Win" Contests to Promote Weight Loss among Overweight College Students



CTSI provides training and education to advance researchers through the career development pipeline, from the undergraduate experience to an independent research career. Visit the CTSI website to learn more about career development opportunities, courses, and training programs for clinical and translational research teams.

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