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Dr. Olutayo Alese receives HHRI minority and women postdoctoral appointment program award funded by 3M

Dr Olutayo Alese

Minneapolis, Minn. – Olutayo Alese, PhD, MSc, MPH, has received Hennepin Healthcare Research Institute’s (HHRI) most recent Biomedical Research and Career Development Award that supports the training of minority and women postdoctoral and junior faculty researchers. Dr. Alese holds a doctorate in anatomy and previously conducted research in the role of liver enzymes in preeclampsia, a serious blood pressure (hypertension) disorder that can occur during pregnancy. At HHRI, Dr. Alese is working in the lab of Amy Anne Lassig, MD, FACS, an experienced head and neck oncology surgeon, on the effects of tobacco use on healing of post-surgical wounds.

HHRI received a grant from 3M to initially fund the Biomedical Research and Career Development Awards for minority and women researchers. The grant is designed to provide a clear pathway to career opportunities in STEM fields, including biomedical research. This aligns with HHRI and 3M’s shared commitment to increase diversity, advance inclusion, and achieve equity in the community, workplace, and business practices.

“While public and private research grants are often limited for early career researchers, our Biomedical Research and Career Development Awards support minority researchers so they can thrive and produce innovative solutions to the world’s most challenging problems,” said HHRI President Ajay Israni, MD, MS.

HHRI’s Biomedical Research and Career Development Awards train postdoctoral and junior faculty researchers under the direction and mentorship of HHRI senior faculty. The long-range goal is to help researchers make the transition to independence as Principal Investigators on their own projects. HHRI is uniquely capable of implementing this program:

  • 77% of mentees successfully achieve independence in their research field
  • Medical research is conducted in partnership with HCMC, an acute care teaching hospital with 60% of the patient population identifying as BIPOC
  • HHRI consistently ranks in the top 10% nationally of all institutions receiving research grants from the National Institutes of Health

Postdoctoral fellowships are awarded to conduct research in one of four key areas: Infectious Diseases, Acute Care/Trauma, Addiction, and Health Services (Diabetes, Kidney Disease, Heart Disease, and others). Ongoing funding is being sought to increase the scope and impact of this program.

Read more about how HHRI is creating a pathway for STEM in science careers


About Hennepin Healthcare Research Institute

Founded in 1952, Hennepin Healthcare Research Institute (HHRI) supports and administers the medical research conducted at HCMC, the acute care research and teaching hospital of the Hennepin Healthcare System. HHRI supports the work of more than 250 researchers and staff, including MDs, MD/PhDs, PhDs, and PharmDs, and consistently ranks in the top 10 percent of all institutions receiving research funds from the National Institutes of Health. For more information about research at HHRI, visit or Twitter @hhrinstitute.


Media Contact
Susan O’Reilly
Corporate Communications Manager
Hennepin Healthcare Research Institute

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