The Blavatnik Family Foundation and the New York Academy of Sciences announced the winners and finalists of the 2019 Blavatnik Regional Awards for Young Scientists. Supporting outstanding postdoctoral scientists from academic research institutions across New York, New Jersey and Connecticut since 2007, the Blavatnik Regional Awards recognize outstanding researchers in the areas of Life Sciences, Physical Sciences & Engineering and Chemistry. The winner in each category is awarded $30,000, while finalists receive $10,000 each.
In the Life Sciences category, Italian-born neuroscientist Carla Nasca, Ph.D., was named as a finalist. She had been nominated by The Rockefeller University and was recognized for the discovery of acetyl-L-carnitine (LAC) as a novel modulator of brain rewiring and a possible new treatment for depression that acts by turning on and off specific genes related to the neurotransmitter glutamate. Dr. Nasca is a post-doctoral fellow of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention in the laboratory of Neuroendocrinology at the Rockefeller University in New York. She received her B.A. in Molecular Biology and her M.S. in Electrophysiology from the University of Palermo in Italy. She earned her Ph.D. in Neurobiology and Pharmacology from the University Sapienza in Rome, Italy, before moving to The Rockefeller University
In 2019, the Blavatnik Regional Awards received 137 nominations from 20 academic institutions in the tri-state area. Len Blavatnik, founder and chairman of Access Industries and the Blavatnik Family Foundation stated, “These remarkable young scientists are making important contributions to scientific research and discovery early in their careers. We hope that the recognition this award provides will both encourage and assist these brilliant young scientists as they pursue their innovative work to find solutions to mankind’s most challenging problems.”
Since 1817, the New York Academy of Sciences has been committed to advancing science, technology and society worldwide. It has more than 20,000 members in 100 countries around the world. The 2019 Blavatnik Regional Awards winners and finalists will be honored at the New York Academy of Sciences’ annual gala at Cipriani in New York on November 11.