Sprunger awarded NIH fellowship

Chemistry graduate student Macy Sprunger won a three-year fellowship from the National Institutes of Health.

Macy Sprunger, a graduate student in Meredith Jackrel’s lab in the Department of Chemistry, won a three-year $136,560 National Research Service Award (NRSA) from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS). The award supports Sprunger's project titled “Defining the Molecular Drivers and Modulators of MATR3 Proteinopathy Implicated in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis and Frontotemporal Dementia.”

As part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), NINDS is focused on better understanding the brain and nervous system as a means to reduce the burden of neurological disease. The NIH's NRSA fellowships aim to support predoctoral students conducting research in scientific health-related fields.

Sprunger and other researchers in the Jackrel Lab study protein misfolding disorders. They are especially interested in understanding how protein misfolding occurs, how it leads to disease, and how it may be possible to prevent or even reverse protein misfolding. Sprunger's research focuses on disordered proteins implicated in neurodegenerative diseases, such as ALS.

“I am honored to receive the NIH NRSA fellowship to further my research on the biochemistry of disordered proteins involved in neurodegenerative diseases,” Sprunger said. “With this support, I can broaden my training to include neuroscience systems for further investigation of these proteins.”