SOUTH BEND - A researcher and professor in the University of Notre Dame’s Department of Biological Sciences has been awarded a National Institutes of Health Director’s New Innovator Award. The $1.5 million grant will allow Cody Smith to expand his research on non-neuronal cells in the central and peripheral nervous systems.

The award supports innovative research from early-career investigators who are within 10 years of their final degree or clinical residency. 

“I am grateful and humbled for the opportunity to be selected for this New Innovator Award,” Smith said. “Even though my name is on the award, it is really the exceptional hard work and talent of the people in my lab that provided this opportunity. I am excited to see what we can discover together.”

Smith is the third professor from Notre Dame to receive the New Innovator Award. Shaun Lee, the Monahan Family Associate Professor of Rare and Neglected Diseases in the Department of Biological Sciences, and Rebecca Wingert, the Elizabeth and Michael Gallagher Associate Professor of Biological Sciences, both received the award in 2011.