NIEHS funds six early-career researchers for innovative science
By Christine Bruske Flowers
New grants totaling $3 million will go to six outstanding early-career scientists, bridging a funding gap to independent biomedical research. NIEHS created the highly competitive grant, known as the Outstanding New Environmental Scientist (ONES) award, in 2006 to encourage early stage researchers who want to discover how our environment influences human health.
The award is notable for funding emerging scientists, typically in their mid-30s. More often, scientists are awarded their first research grant around age 42.
“The ONES funding comes at a critical time in a research career when someone is trying to set up their own lab to pursue their unique ideas,” said Linda Birnbaum, Ph.D., NIEHS and National Toxicology Program director. “These early-career scientists are so innovative, and they inspire the entire research community. I believe this program will spur new biomedical research and lead to important medical breakthroughs.”
The 2015 ONES awardees will study connections between environmental exposures to arsenic, ozone, and other substances, and health problems, including cognitive function, asthma, and DNA damage.
“This talented group of awardees shows tremendous promise,” said Gwen Collman, Ph.D., who oversees all NIEHS grants as director of the Division of Extramural Research and Training. “We believe the ONES grant will provide a firm foundation for building a successful career.”