Two grants totaling nearly $3 million have been awarded to Assistant Professor Maria E. Solesio in the Department of Biology at Rutgers University in Camden. Her research aims to elucidate the role of mitochondrial dysfunction in neurodegenerative diseases and ultimately improve treatment options for common and severe conditions like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.

The grants—$949,958 from the National Science Foundation (NSF) and more than $1.9 million from the National Institutes of Health (NIH)—will support Solesio in her research to understand how mitochondria—the parts of the cell where most of an organism’s energy is produced—become dysregulated when stress is present. When mitochondria malfunction, cell activities are disrupted, and this can cause cells to die. The energy from mitochondria is critical to functions ranging from the movement of bacteria to the heartbeats of mammals. To read the full story.