Written by
Liz Fuller-Wright, Office of Communications
Oct. 17, 2022

Princeton professors Michelle Chan, Celeste Nelson and A.J. te Velthuis are among 103 researchers nationwide to receive 2022 High-Risk, High-Reward research awards from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), created to support unconventional approaches to major challenges in biomedical and behavioral research.

Chan and te Velthuis are two of the 72 nationwide winners of the NIH Director’s New Innovator Award, established in 2007. New Innovator Awards support unusually innovative research from early career investigators.

Chan, assistant professor of molecular biology and genomics, is using CRISPR-Cas9 technology to investigate the development of cells. Her work focuses on mapping how one cell type, like a stem cell, turns into a different cell type, like a neuron or a muscle cell. With that road map in hand, her team can find the key crossroads on the journey — what dictates changes in cell type.