Graduate student receives NIH Pre-Doctoral NRSA fellowship for $109,000

Sagar PaudelSagar Paudel, DVM, PhD student in the Department of Pathobiological Sciences (PBS) has recently been awarded a prestigious NIH Ruth L. Kirchstein NRSA Pre-Doctoral (F31) Fellowship for his proposal entitled “Role of Innate Immunity in Pneumonic Sepsis.” His mentor is Samithamby Jeyaseelan, DVM, PhD, professor in PBS. The award is $109,000 for three years beginning on April 20, 2017.


Sagar’s research focuses on the innate immune molecules, a group of proteins whose expression is regulated in the lungs upon bacterial infection. In particular, he is interested in how innate immune molecules function in inflammatory settings and contribute to the development of antibacterial defense. Using cutting edge techniques of transmission and electron microscopy, Sagar hopes to gain new insights into the pathogenesis of lung inflammation and how innate immune molecules can be targeted to minimize lung damage while preserving host protection.


With the fellowship in hand, Sagar believes that his previous research experience in undergraduate work supplemented with intensive laboratory training in the first two years of graduate studies has equipped him with the skills and aptitude required to successfully execute the research objectives, write scientific papers, and present findings at national conferences.


The NIH Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Awards (NRSA) provide up to five years of support for research training leading to the Ph.D. or equivalent research degree, the combined MD/PhD degree; or another formally combined professional degree and research doctoral degree in biomedical, behavioral, health services, or clinical sciences. The overall goal of the program is to help ensure that a diverse pool of highly trained scientists is available in appropriate scientific disciplines to address the Nation's biomedical, behavioral, and clinical research needs. In order to accomplish this goal, NRSA training programs are designed to train individuals to conduct research and to prepare for research careers.