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L’Oréal USA announced the recipients of the 2019 For Women in Science (FWIS) Fellowship, including Christine Roden, PhD, a postdoctoral research associate at UNC Lineberger.

Christine Roden, PhD, recipient of a 2019 For Women in Science Fellowship
Christine Roden, PhD.

L’Oréal USA annually awards five female postdoctoral scientists grants of $60,000 each to advance their research. This is the 16th year of the program, which to date has recognized 80 postdoctoral female scientists with over $4 million since 2003.

The For Women in Science program is rooted in L’Oréal’s belief that the world needs science and science needs women, because women in science have the power to change the world, according to a news release.

The program provides funding and support during a critical time in female scientists’ careers. Although the number of women in science is increasing, there remains a “leaky pipeline,” with significant career drop-off happening during the years between postdoc and tenure track. In addition to grant funding, fellows receive mentorship, media training, career coaching and recognition.

Roden is a postdoctoral research associate in the lab of UNC Lineberger’s Amy Gladfelter, PhD, an associate professor in the UNC-Chapel Hill Department of Biology. Her research in RNA biology seeks to understand how disrupted RNA structures can result in diseases like ALS or cancer, with the potential to improve treatments for these types of diseases.

Specifically, she is studying how large cells use RNA structure to organize their content. When the organization of these contents is disrupted, it can result in diseases like ALS or cancer. By improving the understanding of how this happens, Roden’s research may ultimately lead to improved treatments for these types of diseases.

The L’Oréal USA For Women in Science fellowship will provide Roden the resources to spend time learning new techniques for RNA profiling and hire an undergraduate aspiring scientist to assist her with experiments and data collection. Roden, 32, received a doctorate in Genetics at Yale University and a bachelor’s degree in biology at University of Pittsburgh. Originally from Pennsylvania, Roden currently lives in Chapel Hill where she enjoys drawing, painting and spending time outdoors.