NIH R00 Award Allows Zanders to Probe the Consequences of Rapid Genome Evolution

Shortly after her arrival this summer, Stowers Assistant Investigator Sarah Zanders, PhD, was awarded an R00 grant from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences of the National Institutes of Health. The R00 is the second phase of a two-phase Pathway to Independence Award, also known by its NIH activity codes K99/R00.

The Pathway to Independence Award is intended to support scientists as they make career and research transitions. The first-phase K99 grant was awarded to Zanders while she was a postdoc at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. The R00 grant is awarded after a K99 recipient secures an independent research or faculty position as well as institutional commitment to provide research support and professional development opportunities.

With three years of R00 funding, Zanders plans to study how genetic conflicts affect the rapid evolution of essential cellular processes and how they may contribute to human health problems such as infertility and cancer. Understanding the details of how genetic elements exert their effects in fission yeast may allow a better understanding of the causes of infertility in other organisms including humans.