First quarter 2020 awards acknowledge research efforts

April 6, 2020

KANSAS CITY, MOThe first quarter of 2020 at the Stowers Institute for Medical Research brought funding news at all levels, with an investigator, a postdoctoral researcher, and a predoctoral researcher receiving awards.

Assistant Investigator Randal Halfmann, PhD, was awarded a four-year grant from the NIH National Institute of General Medical Sciences. His research will examine the mechanisms by which certain protein aggregates called amyloids begin the process of assembling new structures within cells. These new “non-native” structures can then replicate and affect the proteins themselves as well as the cells and organisms that harbor them. Understanding these interactions may ultimately contribute to a better understanding of intercellular behaviors, including those that affect human disease, such as tumor progression.

Cassandra Kempf, Randal Halfmann, and Natasha Shylo.

Natasha Shylo, PhD, a postdoctoral researcher in the Trainor Lab, received the Emerging Research Organisms grant from the Society of Developmental Biology in January. The one-time award will help support her research on early development of veiled chameleons, specifically how they develop left and right sides.

Cassandra Kempf received a Travel Stipend Award from the US Human Proteome Organization (HUPO) to support her attendance at a US HUPO conference. US HUPO is a scientific organization that encourages the use of proteomics technologies and the dissemination of knowledge pertaining to the human proteome and that of model organisms. Kempf is a predoctoral researcher of the Graduate School of the Stowers Institute, doing her thesis work in the Washburn Lab. Kempf’s work focuses on identifying direct interactions in the Sin3/HDAC protein interaction network using biochemical approaches and quantitative imaging.


About the Stowers Institute for Medical Research

The Stowers Institute for Medical Research is a non-profit, basic biomedical research organization dedicated to improving human health by studying the fundamental processes of life. Jim Stowers, founder of American Century Investments, and his wife, Virginia, opened the Institute in 2000. Currently, the Institute is home to about 500 researchers and support personnel, over 20 independent research programs, and more than a dozen technology development and core facilities. Learn more about the Institute at and about its graduate program at