Sung-Yon Kim Receives Donald B. Lindsley Prize in Behavioral Neuroscience
WASHINGTON, DC — The Society for Neuroscience (SfN) will award the Donald B. Lindsley Prize to Sung-Yon Kim, PhD, of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Supported by The Grass Foundation, the prize recognizes an outstanding PhD thesis in the area of general behavioral neuroscience. The $2,500 award was established in 1979 in honor of Donald B. Lindsley, an early trustee of The Grass Foundation. The prize will be presented during Neuroscience 2014, SfN’s annual meeting and the world’s largest source of emerging news about brain science and health.
“The Society is pleased to honor Dr. Kim’s groundbreaking research in the neuroanatomical basis of anxiety behavior,” SfN President Carol Mason said. “His approach to behavioral neuroscience will likely have a broad and lasting impact on biology and medicine.”
Kim, who earned his PhD at Stanford University, used optogenetics, the manipulation of genetically modified neurons with light, to study the brain circuits underlying anxiety. In particular, he examined how projections from the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BNST), a region that receives inputs from the amygdala, mediate features of anxiety such as changes in respiration and risk-avoidance. Kim found that these pathways mediate different components of the fight-or-flight response, and he identified two regions of the bed nucleus that, when stimulated, exert opposite effects on anxiety.
Kim is currently a Simons postdoctoral fellow of the Life Sciences Research Foundation at MIT.
The Society for Neuroscience (SfN) is an organization of nearly 40,000 basic scientists and clinicians who study the brain and nervous system. More information about the brain can be found at BrainFacts.org, a public information initiative of The Kavli Foundation, the Gatsby Charitable Foundation, and SfN.