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2024 WiNTR Visiting International Scholar:

Natalie Jenkins, BSc, MEd, MBPsS is a final-year PhD student in the School of Psychology and Neuroscience at the University of Glasgow, Scotland. Under the supervision of Prof. William Stewart, her research focuses on the long-term brain health consequences of remote intimate partner violence (IPV)-related traumatic brain injury (TBI) in mid to later life. Despite a high prevalence of TBI and repetitive head injury in this population, the long-term effects of IPV-related TBI are worryingly under researched.

With support from the WiNTR VISA award, Ms Jenkins will be travelling to the Brain Injury Research Centre at Mount Sinai Icahn School of Medicine, New York, to work with Prof. Kristen Dams-O’Connor. The project will investigate the prevalence and long-term effects of IPV-related brain injuries in underrepresented and seldom-studied populations at elevated risk for IPV and its sequelae, with a particular emphasis on the disability community. This award will provide preliminary data and facilitate future collaborations that will be used to develop larger projects to support her transition into post-doctoral fellowships.

2023 WiNTR Visiting International Scholar:

Dr. Katie Hunzinger is a biomechanist and clinical exercise physiology currently serving as an Assistant Professor of Exercise Science at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, PA. At the time of receiving the award she was an NINDS T32 funded postdoctoral fellow at the University of Pennsylvania-Perelman School of Medicine in the Departments of Neurology and Biostatistics, Epidemiology, and Informatics under the mentorship of Dr. Andrea Schneider, MD, PhD. Dr. Hunzinger’s research focuses on utilizing large datasets to investigate the long-term morbidity associated with traumatic brain injury and repetitive head impacts across the lifespan. Dr. Hunzinger will be traveling to the University of Glasgow to work with Dr. Willie Stewart to define stroke risk in a cohort of prior rugby and football players compared to matched general population controls; secondary analyses will compare dementia risk among those with and without history of stroke. As a newly hired junior faculty member this award will enable Dr. Hunzinger to expand her research expertise and create international collaborations that she will be able to utilize for future research projects.

2022 WiNTR Visiting International Scholar:

Tabitha Green, PhD
Functional Assessments in Rodents
Following Experimental TBI

2019 TEAM Visiting International Scholar:

Dr. Maha Saber is an Evelyn F. McKnight post-doctoral fellow in Neurobiology of Aging and Alzheimer’s Disease and the Translational Neurotrauma Research Program at the University of Arizona. Dr. Saber is mentored by multiple experts in Alzheimer’s disease and brain injury, and works directly with Dr. Jonathan Lifshitz. Dr. Saber’s research focuses on the effects of brain injury-induced central and peripheral inflammation and their role in neurodegeneration. Dr. Saber will be traveling to Lund University to work with Dr. Niklas Marklund to develop and test a protocol to quantify synaptosomes by flow cytometry. The project will evaluate whether remote ischemic conditioning can reduce neuroinflammation and synaptic reorganization after brain injury. This technique can be extended to mechanisms of rehabilitation and therapeutic interventions for TBI recovery. During Dr. Saber’s time in Sweden, she will be mentored by many other world-class scientists at the Lund Brain Injury Laboratory for Neurosurgical Research. She will exchange ideas with researchers at the institute and receive feedback on experimental design, specifically focused on clinical needs.

2018 WiNTR Visiting International Scholar:

Dr. Ursula Rohlwink is a Neuroscience Lecturer and Fellow in the Neuroscience Instiute and Division of Neurosurgery at the University of Cape Town (UCT), South Africa. She focusses on translational neuroscience research that is driven by clinical imperatives. Under the mentorship of Professor Anthony Figaji, Head of the Paediatric Neurosurgery Unit at UCT and President of the International Neurotrauma Society (INTS), her work has examined the cerebral immune response, perturbations in intracranial dynamics following injury, and biomarkers of brain injury. The NNS WiNTR Visa Award will offer Dr Rohlwink the exciting opportunity to learn novel skills and gain further insights into neuroinflammation at a cellular level. Dr Sujatha Kannan’s Lab at John’s Hopkins Medical Institute has a strong foundation in basic science research of various paediatric neuropathologies, including traumatic brain injury (TBI). There Dr Rohlwink will learn techniques to isolate and stimulate monocytes derived from paediatric TBI patients to elucidate mechanistic data behind the immune and cell death responses. Microglia, the resident immune cells in the brain, stem from the same lineage as monocytes, which are the key first line immune responders. Isolation and study of monocyte responses is a great opportunity to examine the early peripheral immune response, as well as gain insight into how microglia are likely to respond. Furthermore, these techniques will offer new avenues of research in other forms of brain injury. As an emerging career researcher and newly appointed Fellow of the UCT Neuroscience Institute this award will enable Dr Rohlwink to build capacity within her research group, to strengthen existing collaborations with John’s Hopkins University and open doors for further work and cross-pollination in neurotrauma and other mutual research areas.

2017 WiNTR Visiting International Scholar:

Dr. Susana R. Cerqueira is currently a postdoctoral associate at the Miami Project to Cure Paralysis at the University of Miami. Important safety and efficacy clinical trials are currently ongoing at the Miami Project to Cure Paralysis involving Schwann cell transplantation into spinal cord injured subjects. While part of Mary Bunge’s laboratory, Dr. Cerqueira’s research has focused on investigating the potential of combination treatments to be used with SC transplantation after spinal cord injury and maximize its efficacy. Particular focus has been given to enhance transplanted SC survival and to lure regenerating axons to extend and reconnect with the spared tissue. With the 2017 WiNTR-VISA award, Dr. Cerqueira attended and presented two posters at the National Neurotrauma Society Symposium in Snowbird, Utah. She will also use the WiNTR-VISA Award to visit Professor Frank Bradke’s laboratory in Bonn, Germany, at the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE). Dr. Frank Bradke is pioneering investigation of axon growth mechanisms using imaging cutting-edge techniques. The goal of this international collaboration is to refine Dr. Cerqueira’s expertise in advanced imaging of regenerating axons, and use it in her immediate and future research. In addition to hands-on training, Dr. Cerqueira will have the opportunity to network with various researchers at DZNE, discuss her current and future research projects, and also debate career progression plans with diverse senior scientists.

2016 WiNTR Visiting International Scholar:

The TEAM-VISA committee is pleased to announce Dr. Rachel Rowe as the 2016 WiNTR Visiting International Scholar. Dr. Rowe is currently a postdoctoral fellow in the Translational Neurotrauma Research Program at the Barrow Neurological Institute at Phoenix Children’s Hospital. Mentored by Dr. Jonathan Lifshitz, Dr. Rowe’s research has focused on sleep and endocrine dysfunction after TBI, driving her interest in the chronic effects of CNS injury. Dr. Rowe was recently awarded funding from the Arizona Alzheimer’s Consortium to further her exciting new investigation of chronic neuroinflammation after pediatric TBI in rats. Dr. Rowe will be using the WiNTR-VISA to travel to the University of Tasmania in Australia where she will receive training in the histopathological evaluation of markers of brain aging from Dr. James Vickers, Professor of Pathology and Co-Director of the Wicking Dementia Research and Education Center, and Dr. Jenna Ziebell, an expert in immunohistochemistry and neuroinflammation. In addition to hands-on training in the lab, Dr. Rowe will also have the opportunity to network with a diverse array of researchers and clinicians at the Wicking Dementia Research and Education Center, and present her current research project to senior scientists.

2015 WiNTR Visiting International Scholar:

The winner for 2015 is Ms. Patricia Barra de la Tremblaye, PhD candidate in the laboratory of Dr. Hélène Plamondon, PhD at the University of Ottawa. In addition to attending the upcoming 33rd Annual NNS Symposium in Santa Fe, Ms. B. de la Tremblaye will participate in on-site collaborative research at the University of Pittsburgh, in the neurotrauma research laboratory of Dr. Anthony Kline, PhD. The award will be officially recognized during the NNS Awards Ceremony on Wednesday, July 1st. Please join us to congratulate Ms. Patricia B. de la Tremblaye on this achievement!

2014 WiNTR Visiting International Scholar:

The winner for 2014 is Dr. Patricia Washington from Georgetown University. In addition to attending the upcoming 32nd Annual NNS Symposium in San Francisco, Dr. Washington will participate in on-site collaborative research at the Southern General Hospital in Glasgow, UK, in the neurotrauma research laboratory of Dr. William Steward. The award will be locally recognized during the NNS Awards Ceremony on Wednesday July 2nd. Please join us to congratulate Dr. Washington on her achievement!


2013 Anna Leonard, Adelaide Centre for Neuroscience Research

2012 Francesca Pischiutta, Univ. of Milano-Bicocca, Italy

2011 Julie Chan, VCU

2010 Michelle Theus, Univ. of Miami

2009 Jodie Hall, UK

2008 Ashley Di Battista

2007 Virginia Newcombe

2006 Masha Guseva (given at SfN)

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