The Welch Foundation transforms science and society through their generous support of fundamental scientific research. Now, they’re launching the careers of some of the world’s most promising young scientists — all faculty of The University of Texas at Austin.
With the support of Welch Foundation funding, McLellan, Professor Jennifer Maynard and Associate Professor Ilya Finkelstein have gone on to develop an even newer molecular design used in the NDV-HXP-S vaccine. It’s expected to be even more effective — and easier to produce — than current-generation vaccines, changing the game for low- and medium-income countries.
Finkelstein was recently recognized with the Welch Foundation’s Norman Hackerman Award in Chemical Research, a yearly honor recognizing Texas’ rising stars in the sciences. Mostly known for his team’s work to improve the efficacy and safety of gene editing, Dr. Finkelstein pivoted for UT’s COVID-19 vaccine collaboration.
“His creativity in the lab continues to move the field forward,” said Peter B. Dervan, chair of the Welch Foundation Scientific Advisory Board. “Dr. Finkelstein’s recent COVID-19 research also shines light on the importance of ongoing and proactive basic chemical research.”
“This is such a momentous time for our lab and fellow UT researchers,” said Finkelstein. “I look forward to continuing our efforts developing an even better understanding of the coronavirus as well as our focus on gene editing.”