Phillips Receives Top Score on NIH F32 Application

August 12, 2013

Durham, NC – Stacia Phillips, PhD, a post-doctoral associate in the Garcia-Blanco lab in the Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology recently received a 10, the highest possible score, on her National Institutes of Health (NIH) F32 application entitled, “The role of host RNA-binding proteins in regulating dengue virus replication.”

Dengue virus is the most prevalent arthropod-borne virus worldwide and an emerging global health threat for which there is no effective treatment. The overall goal of the proposed research is to identify interactions between dengue viral RNA and cellular proteins in infected cells of both the human and mosquito hosts and to elucidate the role of these proteins in regulating virus replication. This work will advance the field of dengue virus biology by not only informing our understanding of the molecular mechanisms of virus replication but also by revealing potential candidate targets for anti-viral compounds.

“I am pleased that the NIH is as enthusiastic about this research as I am, and I look forward to focusing my post-doctoral work on this exciting and challenging project,” says Phillips.

“Stacia did terrific work during her PhD in the field of herpes virology and is now poised to make critical discoveries in dengue research, says her mentor, Mariano Garcia-Blanco, MD, PhD, Charles D. Watts Professor of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, Professor of Medicine, Director of the Center for RNA Biology, and Professor of Emerging Infectious Diseases at the Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School. “ I am thrilled to have her in the lab, and her perfect 10 is a testament to her talents.”