Steve Asmus, an associate professor of biology and biochemistry and molecular biology at Centre College, has received a $100,000 research grant from the National Institutes of Health, a government-funding program.
The three-year grant will go toward Asmus' ongoing research into brain development.
Centre students will assist Asmus with the NIH project. Using rat brains as a model, the research team will study neurotransmitter production and cell death during brain development. Neurotransmitters are the chemicals that neurons use to communicate with each other.
"If we can understand more about the regulation of neurotransmitters and the cell death process, that may hopefully help us better understand certain neurological diseases, including Parkinson's disease," Asmus says.
The NIH grant will benefit students in many ways. "It allows them to take part in an intensive research experience and to see if they want to do this as a career," Asmus says.