Physiology & Neurobiology News

Inaugural Howard Garrison Advocacy Fellow Recipient

John Redden has been selected to represent the American Physiological Society as a FASEB Garrison Science Advocacy Fellow.

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2023-2024 Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning Outstanding Graduate Teaching Award Winner

Rebecca Oramas was awarded the 2023-2024 CETL Outstanding Graduate Teaching Award fellowship for her contribution to the classroom as a TA.

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2023 UConn AAUP Excellence Awards

Three PNB faculty members were awarded UConn AAUP 2023 Excellence Awards. Xinnian Chen was awarded the Teaching Excellence: Career award. Linnaea Ostroff was awarded the Excellence in Research & Creativity: Early Career award. Akiko Nishiyama was awarded the Excellence in Research & Creativity: Career award.

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WCSU’s Sophia Chiaia: summer SURF fellowship in Jianjun Sun’s lab

Western Connecticut State University student, Sophia Chiaia earned a fellowship to work in Dr. Jianjun Sun’s laboratory this summer of 2023.

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REU Site Award: Research Experiences in Physiology and Neurobiology at UConn

Dr. Joseph Crivello and co-investigator Dr. Karen Menuz were awarded an NSF/BIO/Directorate Biological Sciences award.

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Howard Hughes Medical Institute Inclusive Excellence 3 Grant for inclusive undergraduate education

Xinnian Chen and Andrew Moiseff were among the recipients of the HHMI Inclusive Excellence 3 grant, along with UConn’s CETL Director of Teaching and Learning Assessment, Martina Rosenberg, for inclusive undergraduate education.

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2022 Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning University Teaching Award Winner

Xinnian Chen was awarded the 2022 CETL University Teaching Award fellowship for exemplary practice and service to the university.

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Society for Neuroscience Jennifer N. Bourne Prize in Brain Ultrastructure

Linnaea Ostroff was awarded the 2022 Society for Neuroscience Jenneifer N. Bourne Prize in Brain Ultrastructure for early-career neuroscientists that contribute to the understanding of the structure and function of the brain. Link Here

Recent Graduates


Name Lab Semester Program
Andrew Beard Sun Lab Fall 2023 PhD
Morgan Macey Conover Lab Summer 2023 PhD
Danielle Caefer Schwartz Lab Summer 2023 PhD
Nissi Varghese Tzingounis Lab Summer 2023 PhD
Mushirah Majid Conover Lab Spring 2023 MS
Alexandra Porczak Kanadia Lab Spring 2023 MS
Elliott Wilion Nishiyama Lab Fall 2022 MS
Alisa White Kanadia Lab Fall 2022 PhD
Kyle Drake Kanadia Lab Fall 2022 PhD


Recent Grants

Daniel Mulkey received an award from the DHHS/NIH/National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke for his project, Molecular Signature of Parafacial Expiratory Neurons.

Xinnian Chen received an award from the National Science Foundation for her project, A Developmental Model to Understand the Process of Instructor Implementation of Evidence-Based Teaching Practices. Link Here

Andrew Moiseff received an NSF-DUE award as a Co-PI along with Tadarrayl Stark and PI, Daniel Burkey for their project Community, Identity, and Competence: Supporting Low-Income Students in Computing and the Data Sciences at the University of ConnecticutLink Here

Jeffrey Divino and John Redden received the Alan R. Bennett College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Public Health Policy Research Funding award for their project, Integrating Health Policy Into Undergraduate Life Science CurriculumLink Here

Natale Sciolino received an award from the Brain Research Foundation for her project, Impact of Locus Coeruleus Dynamics on Gustatory Cortex FunctionLink Here

Georgia Zarkada received an award from the National Institutes of Health for her project, Targeting TGFB Signaling to Treat Ocular Neovascular Disease. Link Here

Natale Sciolino, Alexander Jackson, and Anastasios Tzingounis received an internal grant from the Uconn College of Liberal Arts and Sciences for shared equipment for their project, Miniature microscopes in behaving rodents for animal vivarium and behavioral spaces. Link Here

Linnaea Ostroff received an award from the National Institutes of Health for her project, New Strategies for molecular cell-type labeling in volume electron microscopy. Link Here

Linnaea Ostroff received an award from the National Institutes of Health for her project, A Versatile Approach for Highly Multiplexed, High Resolution Imaging of Endogenous Molecules. Link Here

Jianjun Sun was a Co-PI on an award for Kazunori Hoshino of Biomedical Engineering for their project, A light-sheet microscopy (LSM)-based, spatially-resolved 3D dynamic mechanical analysis (DMA) instrument for developmental biology and physiology. Link Here

Recent Awards

William Armstrong IV placed 1st, Julianna Herman placed 2nd, and Sydney Ballou placed 3rd in the 2023 Neuroscience at Storrs Symposium poster competition.


Andrew Beard and Danielle Caefer were selected to receive the PNB TA awards for excellence in teaching, 2022-2023.

Yetunde Akinlaja in Dr. Akiko Nishiyama’s lab earned the Kenneth & Paula Munson Family Fund for Student Support in Health Sciences Fellowship (ISG).

Monica Strain, a student in Dr. Daniel Mulkey’s lab was the recipient of an NIH F31 Fellowship.

Eugene Kim, an undergraduate student in Anastasios Tzingounis’ lab and William Armstrong IV, a graduate student in Alexander Jackson’s lab won the Nu Rho Psi Poster Award for Scientific Merit at the NEURON conference in April, 2023.

Recent Conferences

Geoffrey Tanner co-organized the 2023 Neuron Conference April 23 at the Center for Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences at Quinnipiac University. Link Here

Alexander Jackson was the Co-Vice Chair for the 2022 Inaugural Gordon Research Conference on Hypothalamus in Ventura, CA. Link Here