Former NF Center Trainee Awarded DoD Early Stage Investigator Award
Yuan Pan, PhD, was recently awarded the Early Investigator Research Award from the Department of Defense Neurofibromatosis (NF) Research Program. The Early Investigator Research Award was to support NF-focused research and promote career development towards an independent researcher in the NF field.
Dr. Pan joined Dr. Gutmann’s laboratory as a postdoctoral research fellow to study the role of the tumor microenvironment in NF1-associated glioma in 2015. She is currently a postdoctoral researcher in Dr. Michelle Monje’s laboratory at Stanford University. Dr. Pan’s research focuses on the neuronal regulation of NF1-associated optic glioma, a collaborative project between the Gutmann and Monje laboratories. Neurons are a major component of brain tumors, yet it is unclear whether neurons in the optic pathway play a role in the pathogenesis of NF1-associated optic pathway gliomas. With the support of this Early Investigator Research Award, Dr. Pan aims to understand whether neuronal activity is necessary and sufficient for the pathogenesis of NF1-associated optic pathway gliomas and the underlying molecular mechanisms. This exciting work could lead to novel therapeutic targets and strategies for NF1 patients.