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NIEHS scientists at the 2010 NIH Research Festival

By Eddy Ball
November 2010

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Hideki Nakano, Ph.D.
Nakano also won a FARE last year for his abstract on "The Impact of Surface ALDH1a2 on Pulmonary Dendritic Cells for Generation of Regulatory T Cells Leading to Immunotolerance to Inhaled Antigens." (Photo courtesy of Steve McCaw)

Sailu Yellaboina, Ph.D.
2010 FARE winner Sailu Yellaboina (Photo courtesy of Steve McCaw)

NIEHS scientists and trainees joined their colleagues from across the National Institutes of Health (NIH) at the 2010 NIH Research Festival ( Exit NIEHS. They participated as chairs and presenters in five scientific symposia (see text box) and gave 20 poster presentations at the annual event Oct. 5-8 on the NIH campus in Bethesda, Md.

Twenty-one NIEHS fellows were honored as winners of the 2010 Fellows Award for Research Excellence (FARE) at the 14th annual FARE program and award ceremony (see related story ( The annual competition selects the top 25 percent of abstracts reviewed by 56 different review panels. Winners receive $1,000 travel awards for attendance at scientific meetings in their respective fields.

Along with poster presentations, two NIEHS fellows were selected to present talks at the Festival's symposia. This special recognition of excellence was bestowed upon FARE winner Sailu Yellaboina, Ph.D., for his study, "Identification of Novel Regulators Required for Embryonic Stem Cell Maintenance," and FARE winner Hideki Nakano, Ph.D., for his study, "Th2 Responses to Inhaled Antigens are Selectively Induced by Lung Resident CD103+ Dendritic Cells."

Yellaboina is a visiting fellow in the laboratory of Principal Investigator Raja Jothi, Ph.D. Nakano is a research fellow in the laboratory of Principal Investigator Donald Cook, Ph.D.

The Festival also featured opening remarks by NIH Director Francis Collins, M.D., Ph.D., an opening plenary session on "DNA Unwound: The Path from Characterization to Treatment of Rare and Common Genetic-based Disorders," and a two-day vendor exhibit.

The event culminated with a neurobiology symposium and tribute to Marshall Nirenberg, Ph.D., ( Exit NIEHS National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute senior research biochemist and chief of the Laboratory of Biochemical Genetics who died in January at age 82. In 1968, Nirenberg shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for deciphering the genetic code.

NIEHS scientists and FARE winners participating in symposia

  • Epigenetics, Chromatin, and Gene Regulation, co-chaired by Principal Investigator Raja Jothi, Ph.D., with presentations on "Epigenetics of a Human Immune Response," by Principal Investigator Paul Wade, Ph.D., and "esBAF Conditions the Pluripotent Genome for LIF/STAT3 Signaling by Opposing Polycomb," by Jothi.
  • Metabolic Syndrome to Liver Regeneration and Cancer: Stem Cells, with a presentation on "Identification of Novel Regulators Required for Embryonic Stem Cell Maintenance," by visiting fellow and FARE winner Sailu Yellaboina, Ph.D.
  • Use of Molecular Profiles and Biomarkers in Translational Research, with a presentation on "Proteomic and Gene Expression Arrays Suggest Common Altered Pathways in Multiple Autoimmune Diseases," by Bethesda-based biologist Terrance O'Hanlon, Ph.D.
  • Getting "Energetic" about Mitochondrial Proteomics, with presentations on "Palmitoylproteomic Profiling of the Macrophage Identifies a Role for Palmitoylation in Mitochondrial Targeting of Phospholipid Scramblase 3," by Principal Investigator Michael Fessler, M.D., and "Disease Variants of the Human Mitochondrial DNA Helicase Encoded by C10orf2 Differentially Alter Protein Stability, Nucleotide Hydrolysis, and Helicase Activity," by staff scientist Matthew Longley, Ph.D.
  • Asthma: From Bench-to-Bedside, co-chaired by Acting Clinical Director Darryl Zeldin, M.D., with presentations on "Th2 Responses to Inhaled Antigens are Selectively Induced by Lung Resident CD103+ Dendritic Cells," by research fellow and FARE winner Hideki Nakano, Ph.D., "Hyaluranan and Asthma: A New Therapeutic Target?" by Principal Investigator Stavros Garantziotis, M.D., and "Novel Effects of Dyslipidemia in Airway Inflammation and Asthma Pathogenesis," by Fessler.

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