GSA is pleased to announce the recipients of the DeLill Nasser Award for Professional Development in Genetics for Spring 2016. The award is given twice a year to graduate students and postdoctoral trainees to support the costs of attending national and international meetings and enroll in laboratory courses. It also provides young geneticists the opportunity to present at professional scientific meetings and supplement their laboratory training, which further their career goals and strengthen their training.

The award is named in honor of DeLill Nasser, a long-time GSA supporter and National Science Foundation Program Director in Eukaryotic Genetics. Nasser was regarded by many as the “patron saint” of genetics, and was especially supportive of young scientists and those trying to open new areas of genetic inquiry.

Graduate Student Awardees:

keskinHavva Keskin, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA, USA
Research focus: “My research is about to reveal the existence of transcript RNA-templated DSB repair and characterize the mechanism of this repair in Saccharomyces cerevisiae.”
Travel to: Gordon Conference on DNA Damage, Mutation & Cancer
Principal Investigator: Francesca Storici



Konstantinos Palikaras, University of Crete, Heraklion, Crete, Greece
Research focus: “My research involves investigating the role of mitophagy in neuronal function and neurodegeneration.”
Travel to: European Worm Meeting 2016
Principal Investigator: Nektarios Tavernarakis



Monica Wu, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada
Research focus: “In my research, I use the tiny worm, Caenorhabditis elegans, to deepen our understanding of how small RNA molecules can regulate gene expression to impact the fertility and development of animals.”
Travel to: Small RNA Silencing: Little Guides, Big Biology Keystone Symposium
Principal Investigator: Julie Claycomb


Postdoctoral Awardees:


Mayu Inaba, PhD, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA
Research focus: “I am studying the physiological regulation of asymmetric stem cell division using Drosophila germline stem cell system.”
Travel to: International Society for Stem Cell Research Annual Meeting
Principal Investigator: Yukiko Yamashita



Xiaobo Li, PhD, Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford, CA, USA
Research focus: “I am developing high-throughput tools and resources to transform genetics research in the model alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii.
Travel to: 17th International Meeting: Cell & Molecular Biology of Chlamydomonas
Principal Investigator: Martin Jonikas



Hongan Long, PhD, Indiana University at Bloomington, Bloomington, IN, USA
Research focus: “I study environmental factors’ effects on mutation rate.”
Travel to: Evolution 2016
Principal Investigator: Michael Lynch



Kentaro Noma, PhD, University of California, San Diego, CA, USA
Research focus: “I have developed a novel chemical-free method to induce mutations in worms.”
Travel to: 7th Asia-Pacific C. elegans Meeting
Principal Investigator: Yishi Jin



Stefan Oehlers, PhD, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC, USA
Research focus: “Tuberculosis is the most deadly infectious disease world-wide, I have found a new way to treat tuberculosis by stopping the infection from growing new blood vessels.”
Travel to: Tuberculosis Co-Morbidities and Immunopathogenesis Keystone Symposium
Principal Investigator: David Tobin



Sambasivam Periyannan, PhD, Agriculture CSIRO, Canberra, Australia
Research focus: “I am researching rapid cloning of wheat stem rust disease resistance genes using mutagenesis and genomics based approaches.”
Travel to: Lorne Genome Conference
Principal Investigator: Evans Lagudah