DoM Faculty Members Receive Spivack Pilot Awards

Join us in congratulating the awardees!

Shanshan Sheehy, ScD, assistant professor of medicine, studies whether perceived racism and structural racism increase the risk of stroke, and whether environmental injustice contributes to the disproportional stroke burden among Black women. Black Americans have a substantially higher prevalence of established stroke risk factors and are nearly twice as likely as White Americans to experience stroke. Disproportionate numbers of Black Americans have faced multiple life adversities, including racism, that are increasingly recognized as social determinants of health.

Ignaty Leshchiner, PhD and co-PI Stacy Andersen, PhD, both assistant professors of medicine, study nucleic acid biomarkers in blood compared to cerebrospinal fluid in neurogenerative disease and healthy brain aging in individuals with exceptional longevity. They use nucleic acid methylation patterns to identify the cell-of-origin of circulating molecules and characterize their genetic and epigenetic changes with age to develop blood-based monitoring techniques to study brain aging and disease.