Collaborating in Support of Science: Q&A with Brandon Staglin & Dr. Ekaterina Malievskaia
At One Mind, we are passionate about making a positive change for all people living with serious mental illness. It’s why we fund innovative, patient-centric research and why we have been proudly supporting the Rising Star Awards since 2005, funding early-career scientists exploring a wide array of neuropsychiatric diseases. This year, we are thrilled that COMPASS Pathways is sponsoring three One Mind Rising Star Awards, which will each grant an early-career investigator $300,000 over 3-years— helping advance us toward brain health for all.
I sat down with Dr. Ekaterina Malievskaia, MD, Chief Innovation Officer and Co-Founder of COMPASS Pathways, to ask her some questions about the importance of mental health and funding for high-risk research projects:
As the Chief Innovation Officer at COMPASS Pathways, why do you feel that funding high-risk research is important?
To make big leaps forward, we must de-risk seemingly ‘un-fundable’ ideas by supporting talented scientists who think differently about brain health. These scientists need protected time to read, think and explore without pressure to write grant applications constantly and without the fear of failures that accompany applying for large grants. It is the role of philanthropy – to find and support rising stars who will change our understanding of serious mental illnesses. It is also our mission at COMPASS Pathways: we strive to create products that will be impactful to those seeking new, more effective treatment options.
What are the shared values between One Mind and COMPASS Pathways that led to 2022 Rising Star Award sponsorship?
I think it comes down to our shared focus on people. I have long admired and been deeply moved by the passion, determination, and skills your family has demonstrated to help those living with serious mental illness. In healthcare, we all have our own personal stories; they bring compassion and make us better at our jobs. The advocacy for patients that your lived experience has fostered at One Mind is the standard we at COMPASS hold ourselves to and we’re proud that this core value has united our groups.
What do you hope are the outcomes of the One Mind Rising Star Awards for both lived-experience individuals and the scientific community?
Ultimately, I would love to see scientists develop breakthroughs that matter to patients – that will help us change how we care for and view our mental health, going beyond symptom reduction to a world where all people have achieved mental well-being. To get there, we have a long road ahead, requiring a lot of talent, perseverance, innovation, and funding. I hope we start moving towards a model where patients are informed and involved in shaping the research agenda – working together with scientists as partners, not as subjects.
40 One Mind Rising Star Awards have been granted to some of the best and brightest early-career neuroscientists and psychiatrists, each engaged in high-risk research to improve patient lives. This year, One Mind is proud to again be providing support to three promising early-career scientists through the 2022 One Mind Rising Star Awards, in collaboration with COMPASS Pathways. This three-year grant will help fund research to deepen our understanding of the underlying mechanisms of neuropsychiatric illnesses and foster the development of better interventions for diagnosis, prevention and treatment.
Applications for the 2022 One Mind Rising Star Awards are open until June 6th – learn more and apply here.