PhD Trainee Shiying Liu secures AFAR 2021 Scholarship

Shiying Liu

PhD trainee Shiying Liu has secured the AFAR 2021 Diana Jacobs Kaman Scholarship for Research in the Biology of Aging. The scholarship gives students the opportunity to focus in the field of aging research, as well as increase their understanding of the challenges involved in improving the quality of life for older people.

Shiying Liu is working to identify genetic determinants of neurodegenerative diseases commonly associated with aging. The proposed research will examine and identify novel genetic variants associated with Alzheimer’s disease, the most common cause of dementia and the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. No effective treatments or cures currently exist for this devasting age-related disease.  

Ms. Liu and colleagues will search genome sequences for rare genetic changes associated with Alzheimer’s disease and related phenotypes. This will leverage a new protein structure-based method developed by William S. Bush, PhD’s lab that employs a novel functional annotation technique and incorporates the spatial information of the protein structure to identify rare functional genetic variants. 
Findings from the proposed study will lead to a better understanding of Alzheimer’s disease and a potentially more nuanced understanding of the general mechanisms of aging important for the development of prevention, intervention, and treatment opportunities for a variety of neurodegenerative diseases common among the elderly.

Read more about the AFAR scholarship here
Read more about Shiying Liu’s research interests and track record here.