Skylar Cooper, a biomedical research graduate student at the Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine at Marshall University, has been awarded a prestigious pharmacology/toxicology predoctoral research fellowship from the PhRMA (Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers Association) Foundation.

The fellowship will provide $25,000 per year for two years to support Cooper’s thesis research, focused on investigating the effects of electronic cigarette (e-cigarette) flavors on nicotine addiction. Under the mentorship of Brandon Henderson, Ph.D., an assistant professor of biomedical sciences in the School of Medicine, Cooper will investigate various flavoring chemicals in e-cigarette devices in order to better understand how these flavors impact the addictive properties of nicotine and determine how flavors alone may affect the brain.

“Given the rise in electronic cigarette use among adolescents, this research is timely and of importance in order to reduce the growing e-cigarette use epidemic, especially among American adolescents,” Cooper said.

Cooper, a Michigan native, earned her Bachelor of Science degree in biology from the University of Findlay in Findlay, Ohio. Cooper is on track to complete her Ph.D. in biomedical research with an emphasis in neuroscience of addiction from Marshall by 2022.

Originally from Sheanna Spence for Marshall University Communications