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M.G. Finn Receives Humboldt Research Award

M.G. Finn, Scripps Research Institute professor and member of the Skaggs Institute for Chemical Biology, has received a Humboldt Research Award from the Germany-based Alexander von Humboldt Foundation.

Intended to promote collaboration between German scientists and researchers from abroad, the award recognizes researchers whose “whose fundamental discoveries, new theories, or insights have had a significant impact on their own discipline and who are expected to continue producing cutting-edge achievements in the future,” according to the award announcement.

Award winners are invited to spend a period of up to one year cooperating on a long-term research project with specialist colleagues at a research institution in Germany.

Finn was nominated for the award by Professor Horst Kessler of the Technical University of Munich, with whom he has collaborated for several years on the use of integrin-binding cyclic peptides in nanoparticle targeting to various cancer cell types.

Finn will work with Kessler in Germany on expanding preliminary studies to explore the roles of integrin subtype selectivity and different structures of polyvalent display on cell binding and signaling. “We hope that the resulting information will guide the development of more potent and selective cancer diagnostics and anticancer drug delivery agents,” said Finn.

Nicole Schirle Wins Predoctoral Fellowship

Nicole Schirle, a graduate student in the MacRae lab, has been awarded an American Heart Association Western States Affiliate Predoctoral Fellowship. The fellowships are intended to help students initiate careers in cardiovascular and stroke research by providing research assistance and training.

Award criteria include the applicant’s training plan and environment, and the proposal’s significance, approach, and innovation.

Schirle's research focuses on obtaining the crystal structure of human Argonaute2, the catalytic component of RNA interference (RNAi), to ultimately aid the design of novel RNA therapeutics for treatment of heart disease.

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BallenIsles Charities Supports Scripps Florida Education Outreach
The BallenIsles Charities Foundation, a Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, community group, recently presented a $20,000 grant to Scripps Florida’s Education Outreach program to help support its summer research internship program for local high school students, teachers, and undergraduates. Shown above are Marilyn Canis (left) of the BallenIsles Charities Foundation and Deborah Leach Scampavia of Scripps Florida. (Photo by Jack Robbins)