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Kivanç Birsoy named a 2023 Blavatnik National Awards finalist

Kivanç Birsoy portrait

Kivanç Birsoy, head of Rockefeller’s Laboratory of Metabolic Regulation and Genetics, has been selected as a National Finalist for the 2023 Blavatnik National Awards for Young Scientists in Life Sciences. He is receiving the honor for his groundbreaking research highlighting key nutrients that cancer cells need to survive—but healthy cells can live without—as well as shedding light on debilitating mitochondrial diseases and rare genetic disorders.

Some of Birsoy’s major breakthroughs include discovering that aspartate is a vital nutrient keeping a litany of cancer cells sated and determining that a rare lymphoma subsists on a diet of cholesterol. Most recently, he has revealed links between cellular metabolism and devastating mitochondrial diseases and rare genetic disorders. His work has opened up numerus possibilities for novel treatments.

The Blavatnik National Awards go to faculty-level scientific researchers who are 42 years of age or younger. This year there were 267 nominations from 134 institutions in 38 U.S. states. On September 19, Birsoy will receive his honor at a ceremony at the American Museum of Natural History.