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McCullough named 2020 Darlington mentor award winner

April 23, 2021 By: Tracey Barnett

McCullough named 2020 Darlington mentor award winner

Photo of Dr. Louis McCullough

The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center UTHealth Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences faculty member Louise D. McCullough MD, PhD, is the recipient of the 2020 Paul E. Darlington Mentor Award for GSBS Faculty.

McCullough, professor and Roy M. and Phyllis Gough Huffington Distinguished Chair in the Department of Neurology at McGovern Medical School, is affiliated with the GSBS immunology and neuroscience programs. She has been a GSBS faculty member since 2015.

In her lab, McCullough and other members of the BRAINS (Brain, Rejuvenation, Aging, Inflammation, Neurodegeneration, and Stroke) research laboratory study sex differences in cell death pathways, which are now recognized as major factors in the response to stroke. Her laboratory also studies aging and inflammation, and how these factors influence recovery after stroke. In 2020, she was awarded the American Heart Association’s (AHA) prestigious Merit Award to investigate if dysfunction of the maternal microbiome could lead to inflammation that is passed on to the fetus, which then increases the risk of stroke later in life.

McCullough received her PhD in neuroscience from the University of Connecticut. She then received her medical degree from the University of Connecticut School of Medicine. After graduating from medical school, she completed her neurology residency and cerebrovascular disease fellowship at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore, Maryland.

She is a member of eight professional societies, including the Society for Neuroscience and the American Academy of Neurology. McCullough has received many honors and awards, including the 2019 Landis Award for Outstanding Mentorship from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) and 2019 Stroke Council Award & Lecturer from the American Heart Association’s Council on Stroke. She also serves as the chief of neurology at Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center and co-director of the Mischer Neuroscience Institute.

“It is such an honor to receive this award, said McCullough. "Helping others succeed has always been the most rewarding part of my own career. I hope that I can instill my love of mentorship in my mentees, and that they “pay it forward” by helping others in the future”

The Darlington award provides an honorarium of $2,000 and recognizes a current faculty member who has made an exceptional impact, as a mentor, on both students and faculty. It was created to honor Paul Darlington, Ph.D., former GSBS associate dean.

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