Two Yale Scientists Honored as Sloan Research Fellows

Two faculty members at Yale were awarded the Sloan Research Fellowship. Marla Geha, Assistant Professor of Astronomy, and Daniel Colón-Ramos, Assistant Professor of Cell Biology, have been endowed with $50,000 each to continue stimulating research in their respective fields.

Founded in 1955 to provide financial support for early-career scientists, this fellowship remains the oldest standing program of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. Each year, the foundation awards more than $5.9 million to fund research contributing to new knowledge.

I’m very honored to be recognized with this group of very impressive people,” said Geha. Her research focuses on satellite galaxies that orbit around the Milky Way galaxy. To date, there are fourteen such galaxies known to scientists, but predictions suggest that up to several hundred satellites might exist. Geha has been studying digital sky maps such as the Sloan Digital Sky Survey with hopes of finding these satellites.

Across campus at the Boyer Center for Molecular Medicine, Colón-Ramos explores how neurons connect to one another to form neural circuits. Colón-Ramos is specifically interested in the molecular mechanisms that direct the formation of these circuits, and how they go awry in disease. “I was honored that our research program and the current research efforts from the people in the lab had been recognized with this award,” said Colón-Ramos.

Selected from over 600 nominees, Geha and Colón-Ramos have been distinguished for their research thus far. With the Sloan Research Fellowship, both scientists will further pursue current and future research projects in their respective fields of astronomy and cell biology.