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SPINES:: Yasmin HurdIt is with great pleasure that we announce the establishment of the SPINES Distinguished Speaker Series which celebrates and honors minority scientists who have made outstanding contributions to science and to diversifying the biomedical workforce. Individuals who are honored with this lectureship are those who expand the role of the Scientist by leveraging their positions to increase accessibility to science, propel interdisciplinary research, and use science as a tool for positive social change.

SPINES’ 2018 inaugural speaker on Tuesday April 3, 2018 at 3pm is Dr. Yasmin Hurd, an internationally recognized leader in addiction neurobiology whose lecture is entitled: “The Vulnerable Brain: Pathways to Addiction.” Dr. Hurd is the Ward-Coleman Chair of Translational Neuroscience at Mount Sinai School of Medicine. Dr. Hurd uses an interdisciplinary and translational approach to understand the genetic, molecular and neurochemical events that follow drug use and precipitate addiction. In addition to cutting edge basic neuroscience, Dr. Hurd is the director of Mount Sinai’s Addiction Institute, which provides comprehensive and personalized care for patients with alcohol, substance and behavioral addictions. In recognition of her scientific contributions, Dr. Hurd was elected as a member of the National Academy of Medicine in 2017.

We would like to thank the generous financial support from the Natalie V. Zucker professorship for supporting the establishment of this Speaker Series and making Dr. Hurd’s visit possible.

SPINES is looking forward to welcoming Dr. Hurd on April 3, 2018 at 3pm in the Jaharis Behrakis Auditorium with a reception to follow. Please register for the talk here: (

Lastly, as part of this day, we will be hosting a trainee-only (postdoc, graduate/undergraduate student, PREP scholar, technician, etc) lunch with Dr. Hurd. The purpose of this lunch is for trainees to have the opportunity to chat with Dr. Hurd about her career and challenges along her path. During this lunch modeled after the “Growing up in Science Series,” trainees can seek advice and build community. If you would like to attend, please RSVP here: (