Undergraduate Programs

Undergraduate Programs

Hair Cells


2002 Lions of Virginia Fellowships for Undergraduate Research in Auditory

Lion's Foundation of Virginia Fellowships

Regeneration and stem cell proliferation hold hope for millions of people affected by permanent hearing loss and balance dysfunctions. Those conditions have been considered irreversible, because the production of neuroepithelial sensory cells ends in humans before birth.But fish, amphibians, and birds will spontaneously recover hearing and balance functions after experiencing damage that would be permanent for a human.That recovery results from the regeneration and reinnervation of new sensory cells and it has been found that limited regeneration occurs in the hearing organs of mammalian embryos and in the balance organs of juvenile and mature mammals, including those from adult humans. Potential projects could utilize species ranging from zebrafish to mammals and address hair cell development and regeneration through in vitro and in vivo approaches

The Lions fellowships will provide summer research stipends of $4,000 as well as an annual allowance of $1,000 for research supplies or equipment and an annual travel allowance of up to $1,000 to underwrite attendance at a national scientific meeting. The successful applicants will be expected to conduct research during ten weeks of the summer and will receive academic credit for continued research during the fall and spring semesters. Each Lions Research Fellow will be encouraged to publish research or to write a research report annually.

Eligibility:  Undergraduate science majors who have maintained at least 3.4 GPA at the University of Virginia.

Applications are available at: www.virginia.edu/artsandsciences/fellowships