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EPFL postdoc wins United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation Prize

Arwen Gao with the UMDF Prize check at Washington DC. Credit. A. Gao (EPFL)

Arwen Gao with the UMDF Prize check at Washington DC. Credit. A. Gao (EPFL)

Dr Arwen Gao, a postdoc at the lab of Johan Auwerx at EPFL, has won the 2019 Accelerator Prize from the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation.

The United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation (UMDF) exists to “promote research and education for the diagnosis, treatment, and cure of mitochondrial disorders and to provide support to affected individuals and families.” For more than 20 years, the UMDF has been the largest non-governmental funder of research focused on the development of treatments and cures for mitochondrial disease, having donated nearly $12 million in scientific research while seeding more than $100 million in follow-on funding.

This year, Arwen Gao, a postdoc at the lab of Johan Auwerx at EPFL, has won the UMDF’s 2019 Accelerator Prize, which funds “innovative projects that move our community fast toward diagnosis, treatments and cures.” Targeted to postdocs, the Accelerator Prize amounts to a total of $50,000 in funding over two years. Gao received the most votes and won 1st place of the Prize against two US finalists, all pitching their projects in Washington DC.



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