Assistant professor and diabetes researcher earns UT System Rising STARs award

Shangang Zhao, PhD, assistant professor in the Department of Medicine, Division of Endocrinology, in the Joe R. and Teresa Lozano Long School of Medicine at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio (UT Health San Antonio), received a UT System Rising STARs (Science and Technology Acquisition and Retention) award in the amount of $100,000.

Zhao, also associated with the university’s Sam and Ann Barshop Institute for Longevity and Aging Studies, plans to utilize the UT System STARs award funds to acquire state-of-the-art instruments to significantly enhance the quality and depth of research outcomes.

“These instruments will not only benefit my lab but also advance metabolic and aging research in the Division of Endocrinology, the Barshop Institute, and UT Health San Antonio,” Zhao said. “This new equipment will greatly bolster collaborations across campus to help us gain new and novel insights related to fundamental metabolic and aging questions,” he said.

“Dr. Zhao’s UT System Rising STARs award is an extraordinary honor that holds the potential to elevate our research capabilities in diabetes and metabolic diseases significantly,” said Carolina Solis-Herrera, MD, associate professor and Chief of Endocrinology. “By directing funds towards cutting-edge equipment, we aim to advance knowledge and make a lasting impact on our university’s overall research mission as we continue searching for novel therapeutic targets to improve metabolic disease and eventually find the cure for diabetes.”

In 2004, The University of Texas System Board of Regents established the STARs award program to help attract and retain the best-qualified faculty. Multiple types of STARs awards support the enhancement of UT System institutions across the state.

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