Suhita Ray

Suhita Ray, Graduate Student of Distinction

Suhita Ray

PhD Candidate in IGPBS Molecular Genetics & Cell Biology

American Heart Association Predoctoral Fellowship (2022-2023)

The American Heart Association (AHA) Predoctoral Fellowship program aims to enhance the integrated research and clinical training of promising students who are matriculated in predoctoral or clinical health professional degree training programs and who intend careers as scientists, physician-scientists or other clinician-scientists, or related careers aimed at improving global cardiovascular, cerebrovascular and brain health.  Suhita Ray was awarded a two-year AHA fellowship for her project, entitled “Determining the Role of a Sterile Alpha Motif Domain Protein in Stress-Induced Signaling and Survival.”  Recognizing that different mechanisms control red blood cell formation in pathological vs. physiological states, Suhita aims to understand these processes with the ultimate goal of developing new classes of therapeutics.  To this end, her research aims to elucidate the mechanisms controlling red blood cell recovery during anemia – a condition in which blood stem cells respond differently to stress than they do normally, including upregulation of a “sterile alpha motif” protein that promotes stem cell survival and red blood cell production. She is pursuing this work as a PhD candidate in the IGPBS Molecular Genetics & Cell Biology doctoral program under the tutelage of Kyle J. Hewitt, PhD, Assistant Professor in the Department of Genetics, Cell Biology & Anatomy.