UW Bioengineering senior fellow Ryan Nagao has received a NIH K99/R00 grant. Dr. Nagao will be co-mentored by UW Bioengineering Assistant Professor Ying Zheng and Jonathan Himmelfarb, M.D., UW professor of medicine, holder of the Joseph W. Eschbach Endowed Chair in Kidney Research, director of UW’s Kidney Research Institute and co-director of the Center for Dialysis Innovation.

In his project “A multifaceted approach to modeling vascular dysfunction in kidney disease,” Dr. Nagao will develop a framework for studying renal vascular disease by creating a model of the renal microvasculature environment. This microphysiological system will allow researchers to investigate the factors that contribute to vascular dysfunction, and identify novel therapies to treat renal vascular disease.

Dr. Nagao received his 4-year grant through the NIH study section, NIDDK (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases). The purpose of the NIH Pathway to Independence Award (K99/R00) program is to increase and maintain a strong cohort of new and talented, NIH-supported, independent investigators. This program is designed to facilitate a timely transition of outstanding postdoctoral researchers with a research and/or clinical doctorate degree from mentored, postdoctoral research positions to independent, tenure-track or equivalent faculty positions. The program will provide independent NIH research support during this transition in order to help awardees to launch competitive, independent research careers.