Raman Bahal Receives the Oligonucleotide Therapeutic Society Young Investigator Award

Raman Bahal has been honored as the recipient of the Oligonucleotide Therapeutic Society (OTS) Young Investigator Award, sponsored by Mary Ann Liebert Inc., Publishers. 

OTS is a distinguished, nonprofit entity dedicated to nurturing academic and industry-driven research and development endeavors within the domain of oligonucleotide therapeutics. Founded with the vision of amalgamating expertise from diverse facets of oligonucleotide research to stimulate synergies and fully realize the therapeutic potential of oligonucleotides, it envisaged a groundbreaking era in the realm of therapeutic modalities.

Oligonucleotide therapeutics have emerged as efficacious treatments for various diseases, offering substantial promise for widespread application. Notably, over 100 treatments are presently in development, targeting prevalent ailments such as cancer and Alzheimer’s disease alongside addressing rare diseases. Impressively, oligonucleotide therapeutics have even been harnessed to create tailored treatments for individuals afflicted with rare, life-threatening conditions.

Raman Bahal currently serves as an Associate Professor in the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences at the School of Pharmacy. His academic journey includes earning a Ph.D. from Carnegie Mellon University and undertaking postdoctoral training at Yale University, where he focused on a gene-targeting initiative to treat hematological disorders and cancer. Bahal’s laboratory is at the forefront of developing innovative therapeutic modalities at the intersection of nucleic acid chemistry and nanotechnology. He has an impressive publication record, with 65 research papers published in esteemed journals such as Nature, Nature Communications, Science Advances, and Advanced Functional Material, among others.

Over the past five years, he has secured approximately $5 million in research funding, achieving tenure early in his career. His remarkable accolades include the Brown Coxe Fellowship in Medical Sciences, St. Baldrick Foundation Research Scholar Grant, Connecticut Innovation Grant, Charles H. Hood Foundation Grant, Cooley’s Anemia Foundation Research Scholar Award, American Cancer Society Research Scholar Award, and multiple NIH grants. In 2021, he received the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) Excellence in Research & Creativity: Early Career Award and the National Institute of Pharmaceutical Technology and Education (NIPTE) Rising Star Scholarship Award.

“We are very proud of Raman’s achievements,” says José E. Manautou, Pharmaceutical Sciences Department Head.  “He is as an outstanding and prolific young scholar. In addition to his great scientific foresight, Raman’s ability to establish collaborations and foster synergies with colleagues at UConn and externally, has paid off. Raman’s achievements and this award highlight his dedication, expertise, and potential for further contributions to his field.”

The formal presentation of this award will take place during the 2023 OTS Annual Meeting in Barcelona, Spain, this coming October.