Neurobiology News

The Undergraduate Neuroscience Program, sponsored by the departments of Neurobiology and Psychology, is graduating top students.  As a graduating senior, watch Ameen Barghi speak of his success at UAB.
McWane Science Center
March 30 - April 3, 2015

UAB's Wesley Burge and Joseph Griffis were on Talk of Alabama discussing Brain Awareness Week which is scheduled March 30 - April 3, 2015 at the McWane Science Center. Brain Awareness Week is an opportunity to learn about the the brain and explore the five senses. The McWane Science Center celebrates Brain Awareness Week annually in partnership with UAB.

Burge is in the Visscher Lab and Griffis is in the Szaflarski Lab at UAB.

Please join me in congratulating Sadhvi Batra on winning the Humanity in Action Fellowship! This highly-selective scholarship allows Sadhvi to spend the month of June in Europe studying human rights. Sadhvi is one of only 40 students selected from a national applicant pool of more than 700 young adults.

As an undergrad, Sadhvi majored in neuroscience and was a member of the UAB Honors College's Science and Technology Honors Program. She is currently completing the fifth-year fast track Masters in Public Health program at UAB. In addition, Sadhvi has been admitted to UAB School of Medicine, and (fingers crossed!) will be continuing her studies here this fall.

Sadhvi is currently serving as an Ambassador for the White House Initiative on Asian American and Pacific Islanders. In this role, she is coordinating an AAPI Youth Summit: Empowering Overlooked Identities to be held on the UAB campus April 11th. You may receive requests from Sadhvi for support of this initiative.

Congratulations, Sadhvi!

Ashley Floyd
Associate Director, UAB Honors College
Director, National and International Fellowships and Scholarships
UAB | The University of Alabama at Birmingham
Heritage Hall 525 | 1720 2nd Ave. S. | Birmingham, AL 35294-1152
P: 205-975-3916 |
UAB scientist pens comprehensive textbook on diseases of the nervous system –

Harald Sontheimer, Ph.D., professor of neurobiology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and director of the UAB Civitan International Research Center, has written a comprehensive college-level textbook covering 40 diseases of the nervous system, from stroke to brain tumor.

Sontheimer says the book provides an introductory tutorial for students, scholars, researchers and medical professionals interested in current understanding and treatment of diseases of the nervous system, from foundational science to the best treatment protocols.

"I have been teaching a class with the same title as the book, "Diseases of the Nervous System," for more than a decade, and students kept asking whether there was a book they could use to accompany the class," Sontheimer said. "While there were excellent neurology textbooks, none were suitable for college or graduate students, and even for medical students the neurology textbooks were too specialized."

Sontheimer wrote the book using college students at a Memphis-area college as a focus group while teaching there during a sabbatical from UAB. The book provides comprehensive introductions to stroke, epilepsy, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, head and spinal cord trauma, multiple sclerosis, brain tumors, depression, schizophrenia, and many other diseases of the nervous system.

It is published by Academic Press and is now available at
Media contact: Bob Shepard, 205-934-8934 or

NIH Lecture Series
Please join me in congratulating Brittney Coleman and Oluwagbegmiga Larinde on winning the UNCF Merck Undergraduate Science Scholarship! Solomon Gibson has also been designated an alternate for this award.

The UNCF Merck Science Scholarships provides up to $30,000 in financial support, mentoring, and the chance to intern at a Merck Facility over the summer. Approximately 15 awards are given each year to students throughout the nation. UAB students are disproportionately represented in this group – we've had 14 winners since 2008! The UAB Honors College's Science and Technology Honors Program is to be commended for establishing a pipeline of students who have been successful in this competition; this is the program's 4th year to field two or more winners!

Brittney is a biomedical engineering major and Sci-Tech Honors student who researches in the lab of Dr. Brian Sims in UAB's Department of Pediatrics. (Winner)

Oluwagbegmiga is a neuroscience major and Sci-Tech Honors student who researches in the lab of Dr. Kazutoshi Nakazawa in UAB's Department of Psychiatry. (Winner)

Solomon is a chemistry major and Global and Community Leadership Honors Program student who researches in the lab of Dr. Andrei Stanishevsky in UAB's Department of Physics. (Designated Alternate)

These honors students are outstanding examples of the synergistic collaboration between UAB's undergraduate programs and UAB Medicine. Thanks to all who have invested in their development as aspiring physician-scientists!

Ashley Floyd
Associate Director, UAB Honors College
Congratulations to all the winners at the 2015 Postdoctoral Research Day
Session 1
1st   Tonia Shwartz, Ph.D.
2nd  TaShauna Goldsby, Ph.D.
3rd   Any Goss, Ph.D.     
Session 4
1st   Dao H. Ho, Ph.D.
2nd  Samatha Giordano, Ph.D.
3rd   Vasundhara Kain, Ph.D.
Session 2
1st   Carmen De Minguel, Ph.D.
2nd  Ravindra Boddu, Ph.D.
3rd   Faraz A. Sultan, Ph.D.
Session 5    
1st   Shannon M. Kahan, Ph.D.
2nd  S. Rameeza Allie, Ph.D.
3rd   Venkata Yeramalli, Ph.D.   
Session 3
1st   Angela Bhalla, Ph.D.
2nd  Alisha Epps, Ph.D.
3rd   Luke Parkitny, Ph.D.
Session 6
1st   Davide Botta, Ph.D.
2nd  Hope M. Amm, Ph.D.
3rd   Joo Hyoung Lee, Ph.D.