Dr. Ishmael Abdus-Saboor is one of just 22 scholars selected to join this year’s Pew Scholars Program in the Biomedical Sciences, which provides funding for young investigators of outstanding promise whose work is relevant to the advancement of human health. His lab studies the molecules and neural circuits for somatosensory behaviors, specifically how the nervous system encodes responses to different types of tactile stimulation ranging from pleasure to pain.
Abdus-Saboor will “explore how the brain processes the physical sensation and emotional experience of pain.” As he explains it, “Each of our five senses triggers both sensation and emotion. Although the brain’s encoding of sensation and emotion is critical for survival, the logic of how this computation is performed remains enigmatic. We anticipate that our basic science studies will allow us to one day predict how diverse groups of people will respond to pain at the sensory and emotional level by elucidating the complex relationship between genetic variation, circuit connectivity, and brain activity patterns.”
In addition, Dr. Abdus-Saboor is one of the recipients of Columbia’s 2022 Junior Faculty Grant. According to the Office of the Provost, Junior Faculty Grants are “designed to support Schools’ diversity plans, by advancing the career success of outstanding junior faculty who contribute to the diversity goals of the University by their research, teaching, and mentoring activities.” Dr. Abdus-Saboor received this honor for research which asks: Does brain activity in the naked mole-rat govern cooperative social life?
Congratulations, Dr. Abdus-Saboor!