Weixing Zhao, Ph.D., assistant professor of biochemistry and structural biology in the Long School of Medicine and faculty member of UT Health San Antonio’s Greehey Children’s Cancer Research Institute, has received a Rising STARs Award from the UT System. The award for early-career investigators comes with a $250,000 grant.
Dr. Zhao earned his B.S and Ph.D. from Peking University, China, and received postdoctoral training at Yale University, where he focused on understanding homology-directed repair of DNA double-strand breaks that is dependent on the tumor suppressors BRCA1 and BRCA2.
His current research interest is to investigate the BRCA1/2 tumor suppressor networks in various related biological processes and the molecular mechanisms underlying their pathogenic mutations that are associated with cancers and other diseases, with the aim of providing the foundation and impetus for developing new therapeutic regimens.
Dr. Zhao expressed thanks to the UT System for the award. He said the funds “will help expand the array of tools and increase the capacity for protein production to enhance multiple research programs at UT Health San Antonio. It will enhance the study of the purified proteins biochemically and structurally for mechanistic insights, and also provide enough active proteins to conduct high-throughput screening of drugs for targeted therapies.”
The UT System Board of Regents authorized the Science and Technology Acquisition and Retention (STARs) program in 2004. Multiple types of STARs awards support enhancement of UT institutions across the state.