Wednesday, August 3, 2022

Congratulations to Neuroscience Graduate Students Sam Pierson (Catherine Marcinkiewz’s lab) and Marco Pipoly (Michelle Voss & Eliot Hazeltine’s labs)! Sam and Marco won the 2022 Kwak-Ferguson fellowship award for their research regarding neurodegenerative diseases.

Sam is currently working on a project aimed at understanding the role of the serotonin system in Alzheimer's disease. Specifically, she is studying one of the key proteins in Alzheimer's disease pathogenesis: tau. The aim of this research is to determine how pathological tau in the serotonergic raphe nuclei contributes to the development and progression of Alzheimer’s disease. 

Marco’s research seeks to understand how the aging brain organizes itself in order to continue meeting everyday demands. His thesis work uses fMRI and cognitive control tasks to better understand brain-behavior relationships. His career goal is to uncover the neural mechanisms of cognitive reserve, aging, and the biological basis of prolonged cognitive health.