CSU Northrige -- October 17, 2003

CSUN Professor Receives Prestigious Research Grant

Cal State Northridge biology professor Steven Oppenheimer has been awarded a prestigious grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to continue an ongoing research project on human development and cancer.

The $288,686 award, entitled “Mechanisms of Adhesive Interactions,” will be paid in two installments of $144,343 and will fund the MBRS Score Program Supplement until June 30, 2005.

“This grant is the largest amount per year, solely for research, I have ever received,” Oppenheimer said. “This grant is an honor. It is much appreciated and will help my lab accomplish its research goals.”

MBRS SCORE Program Supplement uses a model sea urchin system to investigate the molecular basis of a specific cellular interaction. Learning the relationship between molecules involved in various types of cell adhesions plays a key role in studying the spread of cancer and in embryonic development, Oppenheimer said.

Additionally, the program helps train students in state-of-the-art science research. It has provided more than 200 students opportunities to co-author lab publications and more than 60 students have completed their master’s degree in the lab.

Oppenheimer is a biology professor of embryology and the biology of cancer and conducts research-training courses. He received a bachelor of science from Brooklyn College the City University of New York and a Ph.D. in biology from Johns Hopkins University.

He has received over 20 honors, including a prestigious election as Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and has been named a California State University system Trustee’s Outstanding Professor.

Oppenheimer has also been invited to serve on the NIH Research Grant Evaluation panel. Founded as a one-room Laboratory of Hygiene in 1887, the NIH, an agency of the Department of Health and Human Services provides leadership and direction to programs designed to improve the health of the nation through research.

NIH’s mission is to pursue fundamental scientific knowledge of nature and behavior of living systems and to use that knowledge to extend a healthy life and to reduce illness and disabilities.

CSUN’s College of Science and Mathematics is home to several nationally recognized programs where students gain valuable experience through hands-on work using the latest technologies and equipment. Students also have an opportunity to co-author publications with faculty members, present their research results at national and international meetings, and prepare for teaching careers.

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