National Science Foundation awards UD researcher more than $500K

A University of Dayton engineering researcher has been awarded $542,000 from the National Science Foundation.

Researcher Kristen Comfort will use the money to build a cellular model that acts more like the human body and allows for better understanding of drug interactions.

The money, a National Science Foundation CAREER award, will help support Comfort’s project over the next five years, according to the university.

Comfort also serves as an assistant professor and director of UD’s bio-engineering graduate program. Around 150 engineering faculty receive CAREER awards each year, according to the university.

Comfort’s research could lead to better ways to deliver medicine straight to the source of an illness, such as a malignant tumor or infection, without the cost and ethical concerns of animal testing.

Comfort said she will set up the systems in her first year and use the remaining four years to examine how nanomaterials, tiny particles like silver used to deliver medications in the body, interact with the systems.

Comfort will be able to employ a graduate student and two undergraduate students for the five-years, according to the university.


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