UAB first: Vision science student awarded F31 grant

Mai Nguyen is the first UAB School of Optometry student to receive this research grant, totaling $189,180. She will study retinitis pigmentosa.
Written by: Satina Richardson
Media contact: Hannah Echols

web.2Mai NguyenMai Nguyen is the first University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Optometry student to receive an F31 Ruth L. Kirschstein Predoctoral Individual National Research Service Award. This National Institutes of Health grant is for five years, totaling $189,180. 

Nguyen is a Vision Science Graduate Program student. Her proposed project is titled “Characterization of DHDDS RP59 Knock-in Models of Retinitis Pigmentosa.” She will study the progression and mechanism of retinitis pigmentosa in three strains of mice. 

There have been 110 F31 awards from the NIH to UAB students since 1993. This is the second one from the National Eye Institute.

“It’s a real delight when a student is awarded an F31 predoctoral award,” said Lawrence Sincich, Ph.D., UAB School of Optometry associate professor. “It is the largest grant NIH has for students working toward their Ph.D. and is a great indicator of promise for both the student and the project. Because the award comes after peer review, Ms. Nguyen can feel especially uplifted by what senior colleagues in her field think of her.”

Nguyen is from Oakland, California, and graduated from the University of California, Davis with a Bachelor of Science degree in biology.