Sara Clasen is the Grand Prize Winner of the 2023 NOSTER and Science Prize!

Congratulations to Sara Clasen, Grand Prize Winner of the NOSTER & Science Microbiome Prize. The NOSTER & Science Microbiome Prize is awarded for the best essay submitted by young investigators in the rapidly evolving field of microbiome research. The prize comes with a cash award of US$25,000, a five-year digital subscription to Science, and the publication of the winning essay in Science. Read her award-winning essay here.

Sara’s award-winning essay discusses her recent discovery of bacterial “silent flagellins” that bind to the human innate immune receptor TLR5 but do not trigger a pro-inflammatory response, a phenomenon she termed “silent recognition.” This suggests that certain bacteria in the gut can actively modulate their interaction with the host immune system, challenging our current understanding of flagellin-TLR5 interactions.

This award is a testament to Sara’s dedication to advancing our understanding of the microbiome and its impact on human health. Congratulations Sara!

Clasen, S. J., Bell, M. E. W., Borbón, A., Lee, D. H., Henseler, Z. M., de la Cuesta-Zuluaga, J., Parys, K., Zou, J., Wang, Y., Altmannova, V., Youngblut, N. D., Weir, J. R., Gewirtz, A. T., Belkhadir, Y., & Ley, R. E. (2023). Silent recognition of flagellins from human gut commensal bacteria by Toll-like receptor 5. Science immunology, 8(79), eabq7001.