The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation has awarded Markita Landry, assistant professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, a 2018 Sloan Research Fellowship for her work in neuroscience. Landry is one of a select group of U.S. and Canadian researchers honored for their early-career achievements marking them as the next generation of scientific leaders.
Landry and her team are involved in groundbreaking research to develop a new nanosensor technology and near-infrared imaging platform that will enable non-invasive imaging of neurotransmitter activity in the living brain. The research is specifically looking at the problem of how to test psychiatric and neurological drug efficacy in the brain with infrared light. Optical detection of neurotransmitters in the brain of an awake animal will enable direct study of the fundamental underlying mechanisms of behavioral disorders, which can accurately validate the neural action of a psychiatric drug.