ASCB announces its inaugural cohort of NIH MOSAIC Scholars

MOSAIC Scholars from left top: Jenna Christensen, Yadira M. Soto-Feliciano, Nicole R. Sparks, Charisse Winston, and Yvon L. Woappi.
MOSAIC Scholars from left top: Jenna Christensen, Yadira M. Soto-Feliciano, Nicole R. Sparks, Charisse Winston, and Yvon L. Woappi.

The American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB) is pleased to announce its first cohort of scholars for the Maximizing Opportunities for Scientific and Academic Independent Careers (MOSAIC) K99/R00 program, an initiative funded by the National Institutes of Health.

MOSAIC facilitates the transition of promising postdoctoral researchers from diverse backgrounds into independent faculty careers at research-intensive institutions. The program provides scholars with up to five years of mentored career development and research support. Additionally, each scholar becomes part of a cohort-based career development program designed to expand their professional networks and gain additional skills and mentoring. The network is administered by awardees within an institutionally-focused research education cooperative agreement (aka, the MOSAIC UE5). Along with ASCB, other UE5 awardees include the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and the Association of American Medical Colleges.

ASCB’s MOSAIC Program scholars (called AMP Scholars) include:

  • Jenna R. Christensen; Project Title: Evolution of Cargo Transport; University of California, San Diego
  • Yadira M. Soto-Feliciano; Project Title: Understanding Mechanisms of Transcriptional Regulation by Chromatin Adaptor Proteins; Rockefeller University
  • Nicole R. Sparks; Project Title: Analysis of Environmentally-Sensitive epigenetic Machinery During Osteogenic Differentiation; University of California, Riverside
  • Charisse Winston; Project Title: Ethnoracial Impact on Blood-Based Biomarker Detection of Alzheimer’s in Primary Care Patients; University of California, San Diego
  • Yvon L. Woappi; Project Title: Delineating Epigenetic Coordination of Regenerative Cell Plasticity; Brigham and Women’s Hospital

Erika Shugart, CEO of ASCB, and Ashanti Edwards, ASCB Director of Professional Development, will serve as the co-PIs for the program. The program will also be co-directed by Mary Munson, professor at the University of Massachusetts Medical School and chair of ASCB’s Women in Cell Biology Committee, and Michael Boyce, associate professor at the Duke University School of Medicine and co-chair of the Society’s Minorities Affairs Committee.

As with all MOSAIC K99/R00 awardees, scholars proposed rigorous research and career development activities—and their mentors provided tailored career development plans—as part of their applications. In addition, these early career scientists demonstrated compelling commitments and contributions to enhancing diversity, as well as substantive plans to continue these activities as part of their independent research careers.

To view the full list of inaugural scholars, see the MOSAIC Scholars webpage. For additional details about the program and the upcoming February 12 application deadline for K99/R00 scholars, see the MOSAIC webpage. You may also contact Kenneth Gibbs, who manages the MOSAIC and UE5 programs, at

Visit the ASCB MOSAIC Program (AMP) website here

About the Author:

Mary Spiro is ASCB's Strategic Communications Manager.