Designed to acknowledge the most original and important accomplishments in Neuroscience research at WashU by a predoctoral or postdoctoral fellow

Congratulations to the 2022 winners!

Lucia Capano

Graduate Student
Yoo lab, WashU Developmental Biology

“Recapitulation of endogenous 4R tau expression and formation of insoluble tau in directly reprogrammed human neurons”

Xiaoying Chen, PhD

Postdoctoral Research Associate
Holtzman lab, WashU Neurology

“Microglia-mediated T cell Infiltration Drives Neurodegeneration in Tauopathy”


Background

Dr. James L. O’Leary joined the faculty of the Department of Anatomy at Washington University in 1928.  In 1948 he joined the faculty of the Department of Neurology, becoming Head of the Department in 1946, remaining until 1971.  For many years, neuroscience research at Washington University was conducted by Dr. O’Leary and his colleagues.  They developed an interdisciplinary and interactive approach to the study of the nervous system that continues today.  Dr. O’Leary’s colleagues, admirers, and former students established a fund in 1975 to award a prize each year to a graduate student and/or postdoctoral fellow or resident for excellence in neuroscience research.

Congratulations to the 2022 finalists!

Join us for the 2022 O’Leary Prize Competition

“Designed to acknowledge the most original and important accomplishments in Neuroscience research at WashU by a predoctoral or postdoctoral fellow”

Live In Person!

2022 O’Leary Prize Competition
Tuesday, March 15
1:00p
Eric P. Newman Education Center (EPNEC) Seminar Room B
Medical Campus

This year’s finalists:

  • Simone Brioschi, PhD, postdoc – Colonna lab: “Heterogeneity of meningeal B cells reveals a lymphopoietic niche at the CNS border”
  • Lucia Capano, graduate student – Yoo lab: “Recapitulation of endogenous 4R tau expression and formation of insoluble tau in directly reprogrammed human neurons”
  • Jiayang Chen, graduate student – Dougherty lab: “Delineating the in vivo function of the MYT1L neurodevelopmental disorder gene”
  • Xiaoying Chen, PhD, postdoc – Holtzman lab: “Microglia-mediated T cell Infiltration Drives Neurodegeneration in Tauopathy”
  • Rui Feng, PhD, postdoc – Cavalli lab: “Self-renewing macrophages and microglia populate dorsal root ganglia after nerve injury and contribute to promote axon regeneration”
  • Nicole Leitner, PhD, postdoc – Ben-Shahar lab: “Interactions between neuronal sex determination and Hox gene specification drive the segmental specialization of neural circuits along the anterior-posterior brain axis in Drosophila”
  • Daniel Murphy, PhD, staff scientist* – Corbo lab: “Genetic reprogramming via acute Nr2e3knockout prevents photoreceptor degeneration”     *work performed as a postdoc
  • Patrick Sheehan, graduate student – Musiek lab: “Bi-directional relationship between astrocyte circadian clocks and Alzheimer’s Disease pathology”
  • Leo Volkov, graduate student – Corbo lab: “Defining a hierarchical cascade of transcriptional factors controlling photoreceptor fate”
  • Jiang Zhu, graduate student – Weihl lab: “VCP suppresses proteopathic seeding in neurons”

Each Finalist will deliver a 10 minute presentation, and our judging panel will choose a winner to receive a $1000 prize.

Please join us for an afternoon of exciting science and competition, and to support Neuroscience at WashU!

Also, note that each year, a past O’Leary Prize recipient is invited to be a guest judge and present the O’Leary Lecture. This year’s guest judge is Jeff Mumm, PhD (Johns Hopkins University) who will deliver the O’Leary Lecture on Wednesday March 16.

Instructions to apply

The application window is closed.

Current Washington University predoctoral students, postdoctoral fellows and residents are invited to submit a summary of their work to Erik Musiek (musieke@wustl.edu) and the Office of Neuroscience Research (onr@email.wustl.edu). The submission must arrive no later than 5pm (CST), Friday February 11, 2022.

The summary should include a title page indicating the applicant’s name, preceptor, campus box, telephone number, email address and status (e.g. graduate student, postdoctoral fellow, resident). The summary itself should begin with a 250 word abstract and be no longer than 5 double spaced pages, size 11 font, including figures but not references. A separate listing of no more than 10 references is allowed. In addition, a letter from the applicant’s preceptor simply attesting that the trainee performed the work included should accompany the submission. A letter of recommendation is not needed; just attestation to the work. If the work to be presented is published, in press, recently accepted for publication or currently in review, please note this information on the coversheet. If the work has been accepted for publication, please note the journal and estimated date of publication.

Application format:

  • Page 1: Coversheet & Details
  • Page 2: Attestation
  • Page 3: 250 Word Abstract
  • Page 4-8: Research Summary and an emphasis on the innovation and impact of the study
  • Page 9: References

Application should come in one file, pdf preferred.

All work to be considered for the prizes must have been carried out by the applicant while a student, resident, or fellow at Washington University.  From the submitted summaries the Selection Committee will choose those to be presented at the O’Leary Prize program on Tuesday afternoon, March 15th, 2022 from 1:00-5:00pm, EPNEC Seminar Room B.  

Note that each year, a past O’Leary Prize recipient is invited to be a guest judge and present the O’Leary Lecture.  This year’s guest judge is Jeff Mumm, PhD (Johns Hopkins University) who will deliver the O’Leary Lecture on Wednesday March 16.

More on the O’Leary Lecture