Maryam Ahmadian, PhD 1982-2020
Maryam Ahmadian graduated from UCSD in 2004 with a B.S. in Biochemistry as a Regents Scholar. After discovering a passion for research while working in a laboratory as an undergraduate, she attended graduate school at UC Berkeley, receiving her Ph.D. in 2010 in Metabolic Biology. Working under the supervision of Professor Hei Sook Sul, she made seminal contributions to our understanding of how fat cells are regulated, publishing several ground-breaking studies in the highest impact journals. In 2011, she joined the laboratory of Ron Evans at the Salk Institute, where she continued to excel in studying the basic aspects of fat cell biology, explaining how living organisms respond to cold stress. Unfortunately, she was diagnosed with Stage 4 colon cancer in 2014, but nevertheless advanced scientific knowledge and published several impactful papers in top international journals– a testament to her determination and commitment as a scientist. In 2017, she joined the Saltiel laboratory as an Assistant Professor. Maryam led a dedicated group of students and postdoctoral fellows, continuing to study the underlying basis of obesity and type 2 diabetes. During her short career, Maryam won numerous awards and fellowships, and traveled throughout the world to present her work at scientific conferences. As an outstanding scientist, excellent collaborator, wonderful teacher, and thought leader in the field, she was well on her way to developing an international reputation.