Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL) Assistant Professor Lucas Cheadle received the Rita Allen Scholar Award from the Rita Allen Foundation. The Rita Allen Foundation funds big ideas that aim to solve complex problems in science and civil society. Cheadle was selected for his neuroscience research.
Cheadle joined the CSHL neuroscience faculty in 2020. He focuses on how sensory experience and the environment shape brain development, focusing on specialized immune cells in the brain called microglia. He is exploring how the brain’s immune system contributes to neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism.
CSHL President and CEO Bruce Stillman says, “I congratulate Lucas on receiving this prestigious Rita Allen research award. Lucas joins a list of CSHL faculty who have received this award, including me. I know that receipt of this award enabled me to expand my research at a critical time in my career and Lucas’s outstanding research on microglia in the brain will likewise benefit from this additional research support and recognition.”
Cheadle says, “receiving the Rita Allen Scholar Award is an achievement for which I am truly grateful. This award will allow us to establish a unique, multidisciplinary research program at the interface of neuroscience and immunology that we hope will lead to both basic science and translational insights in the years to come.” Cheadle was appointed a Next Generation Leader by the Allen Institute for Brain Science in November 2020 and was selected as a McKnight Scholar by the McKnight Foundation in June 2021.
Since 1976, the Rita Allen Foundation has invested in more than 190 biomedical scientists at the early stages of their careers, enabling them to pursue research directions with above-average risk and promise. Scholars have gone on to make fundamental contributions to biomedical research—including discoveries that have fueled gene therapy and gene editing, innovative treatments for cancer and neurological disorders, and new ways of studying neurons. They have won recognition including the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, the National Medal of Science, the Wolf Prize in Medicine, the Lasker-Koshland Award for Special Achievement in Medical Science, and the Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences.