Molly Mollica wins American Heart Association Career Development Award

Published: Jun 3, 2024

Woman smiles at camera. Laboratory equipment in background.
Molly Mollica (Photo courtesy of Molly Mollica)

Molly Mollica, an assistant professor in mechanical engineering who joined UMBC in August 2023, has been selected for an American Heart Association (AHA) Career Development Award, which will provide more than $200,000 to fund her research for the next three years.

Mollica studies the biomechanics of blood platelets, which play an essential role in healthy blood clotting, but can also contribute to the formation of blood clots that cause heart attacks and strokes. Bleeding and clotting have been shown to vary between males and females, but the reasons are not well understood. In her AHA-funded research, Mollica will investigate how platelets from males versus females, and from donors with varying hormone levels, respond to and generate mechanical forces. She hopes the information she uncovers will help doctors better understand healthy platelet function, design more inclusive health research, and develop better treatments.

“I’m honored to receive this award,” said Mollica. “We look forward to better understanding sex and hormone differences in platelet function. This research is important in providing tools to develop new preventative and curative therapeutics.”

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