Public Release: 

UT Southwestern Microbiologist awarded prestigious NIH research grant

UT Southwestern Medical Center

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IMAGE: This is Dr. John Schoggins, UT Southwestern Medical Center. view more

Credit: UT Southwestern

DALLAS - Oct. 31, 2014 - Dr. John Schoggins, Assistant Professor of Microbiology at UT Southwestern Medical Center, has received a prestigious New Innovator Award from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for research that aims to understand why bats can harbor numerous viruses without becoming sick.

Dr. Schoggins' $2.385 million in support over five years is one of 85 awards given under the High Risk/High Reward program supported by the NIH Common Fund. The New Innovator Awards were created to support highly creative research ideas from early career investigators.

The NIH award will further a line of research that Dr. Schoggins started under one of UT Southwestern's High Risk/High Impact grants, which provide one year of funding for work that carries a substantial risk of failure but has the potential to greatly influence the science or practice of medicine.

"I am honored and excited to receive this award. Our lab will now have the ability to pursue scientific questions that might not normally be funded by traditional grant mechanisms," Dr. Schoggins said, adding "The UT Southwestern High Risk/High Impact Program provided the early funding that laid the foundation for the New Innovator Award."

Dr. Schoggins - lead author on two studies published in the journal Nature in 2011 and 2013 - is a UT Southwestern Endowed Scholar and holds the Nancy Cain and Jeffrey A. Marcus Scholar in Medical Research, in Honor of Dr. Bill S. Vowell.

Dr. Michael Norgard, Chairman of Microbiology who holds the B.B. Owen Distinguished Chair in Molecular Research, said, "I am excited that Dr. Schoggins has garnered this national attention; New Innovator awards are one of the most prestigious forms of support bestowed by the NIH on early-stage investigators in the biological and medical sciences. This is an amazing accomplishment that will bring additional recognition to Dr. Schoggins' work, to the UT Southwestern community, and to the Endowed Scholars Program that initially supported Dr. Schoggins' dynamic, cutting-edge research program."

A graduate of the University of Rochester in New York, Dr. Schoggins earned his doctorate degree in molecular biology from Cornell University Medical College. Dr. Schoggins was a postdoctoral researcher at The Rockefeller University in New York prior to joining the UT Southwestern faculty in 2012.

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About UT Southwestern Medical Center

UT Southwestern, one of the premier academic medical centers in the nation, integrates pioneering biomedical research with exceptional clinical care and education. The institution's faculty includes many distinguished members, including six who have been awarded Nobel Prizes since 1985. Numbering approximately 2,800, the faculty is responsible for groundbreaking medical advances and is committed to translating science-driven research quickly to new clinical treatments. UT Southwestern physicians provide medical care in 40 specialties to about 92,000 hospitalized patients and oversee approximately 2.1 million outpatient visits a year.

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