Alina Iovleva, MD, has been named an inaugral recipient of the Burroughs Wellcome Foundation Physician Scientist Incubator Program Award. The goal of the Physician Scientist Incubator Program in Pittsburgh is to train the highest quality biomedical physician investigators, focusing at this time on those with MD degrees without PhD doctoral training who seek careers that involve pre-clinical research. Support from the Burroughs Wellcome Foundation (BWF), UPMC and the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine enables Alina to receive comprehensive training as a BWF Scholar.

As a part of her training, Alina will investigate the impact of colistin resistance mediated by LPS modification on A. baumannii virulence, as well as on innate immune responses to infection in in vitro and in vivo models. Additionally, she will examine FkpA as a potential virulence factor that may negatively impact patient outcome during A. baumannii infection and investigate its underlying mechanism. Resulting discoveries from this study will help identify novel therapeutic targets for treatment of this highly problematic pathogen.

In addition to the University of Pittsburgh, the Burroughs Wellcome Foundation issued awards to Stanford University, Vanderbilt University, the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center-Dallas and Duke University Medical Center. The Burroughs Wellcome Foundation Program provides an outstanding training opportunity for Alina and will help fill the serious shortage of young physician scientists concentrating on Infectious Diseases.