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--Hongjun Song “A Leading Researcher of Adult Neural Stem Cells”
November 17, 2008 - The Society for Neuroscience (SfN) is awarding the Young Investigator Award to co-recipient Hongjun Song, Ph.D., of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, for his work in understanding how adult neural stem cells mature into nerve cells and integrate into the existing neuronal circuitry.
Song shares the award with Bernardo L. Sabatini, M.D., Ph.D., of Harvard Medical School. The award will be given at Neuroscience 2008 in Washington, D.C., at the society’s annual meeting.
“Supporting young neuroscientists is a cornerstone of SfN’s mission,” says Eve Marder, president of SfN. “Both Drs. Sabatini and Song have demonstrated a quality of work, impact of discovery and creative methods that mark them as emerging leaders in the field.”
Over the last five years, Song has pioneered the study of molecular mechanisms that regulate how new neurons develop in the adult brain. His research team has developed a new approach that allows them to pinpoint the date of birth of single newborn nerve cells. They then can alter the genetic material of a single cell in a living animal and follow its progress through a high-powered microscope.
“We are thrilled that Hongjun has been recognized for his outstanding scientific contributions,” says Chi Dang, M.D., Ph.D., the vice dean for research at Hopkins and director of its Institute for Cell Engineering, of which Song is a member.