2021 Showalter Scholars are announced; awards benefit junior researchers making significant contributions
The 2021 Showalter Scholars were announced during an in-person and virtual event on October 19, 2021. The Showalter Scholar program was instituted to support and recognize faculty who have used their scientific expertise and productivity to make significant contributions to the IU School of Medicine and the field of scientific research. This year’s scholars are:
Nicole Fowler, PhD, MHSA, an associate professor of medicine, whose research focus is on early detection of dementia.
Erik Imel, MD, a professor of medicine, whose research focus is on bone and mineral disorders, especially rare bone disorders.
Yu-Chien Wu, MD, PhD, an associate professor of radiology and imaging sciences, whose research focuses on diffusion physics in biologic system using diffusion MRI.
Lei Yang, PhD, an associate professor of pediatrics, whose research focuses on the translational study of human heart disease.
Scholars must be current full-time faculty members at IU School of Medicine in a position of either assistant professor or assistant scientist at the time of application. Awardees can receive up to $75,000 through the program. The funding can be very useful for junior investigators and can help them secure more funding later in their careers.
Rueben Kapur, PhD, the Vice-Chair of Basic Sciences Research and Director of the Herman B. Wells Center for Pediatric Research, spoke in recognition of this year’s scholars. Kapur discussed the changing demographics of the Showalter awardees and showcased the positive return on investment that the Showalter funding helps pave the way for each awardee to secure.
Fowler was the only 2021 Showalter scholar to present her work during the trustee meeting. Her presentation was about improving the quality of life for older adults suffering from dementia.
“We may not be able to cure dementia, but we are able to help the older adults along their journey,” said Fowler. “Our work has found that early detection of dementia has no increase in depression or anxiety.”
Other scientists who presented at the meeting included:
Hongxia Ren, PhD, (2018 Showalter Young Investigator) an assistant professor in the Department of Pediatrics at IU School of Medicine and a member of the IU Center for Diabetes and Metabolic Diseases (CDMD).
Courtney Rowan, MD, MS, (2018 Showalter Young Investigator) a pediatric critical care physician scientist at IU School of Medicine in the Department of Pediatrics.
Tuan Tran, MD, PhD, (2018 Showalter Young Investigator) an assistant professor of medicine at IU School of Medicine, where he studies both naturally acquired and vaccine-induced immunity to malaria using systems-based approaches.