Payam Mohassel is a clinical research fellow at the NIH.  After his clinical training in adult neurology at Johns Hopkins University, he joined Dr. Carsten Bönnemann’s group at the NIH. His main areas of research interest include gene discovery efforts, disease mechanism studies in preclinical models, and early-phase clinical trials in neuromuscular disease.

At the WMS first virtual congress in 2020, Payam won the prestigious Presidents Prize for Young Myologist of the year, which each year is funded from the President’s Fund from proceeds of Honorary Lifetime President Victor Dubowitz’s memoirs (Ramblings of a Peripatetic Paediatrician).

From its inception, the core belief of the WMS has been to nurture the young and to support and encourage them from embryonic myologist to full maturity as scientists and practitioners, establishing and growing their own teams of enthusiastic young researchers.
Each year there are 6 prizes awarded with all prize winners being decided by an international, multidisciplinary prize committee.

Almost a year on from winning the WMS Young Mylogist Award, we caught up with Payam to congratulate him once again and ask him a few ‘meet the award winner’ questions to find out more about what winning the award has meant to him, here’s what he had to say:

Payam Mohassel

What has been the impact of winning Young Mylogist last year?

It has been a great honor for me to be recognized as the young myologist of the year by WMS2020, in the company of a highly accomplished and diverse group of young myologists who have previously won this award. I have no doubt this award will help propel my career as an early stage investigator in the field.

What would you say to future students?

Keep up the hard work and persist!

What are your aspirations?

As a clinician scientist, I first and foremost aspire to help bring new therapies to individuals affected by neuromuscular diseases through discoveries at the pre-clinical stage and early-phase clinical trials.

How has life changed since winning?

Perhaps it is too early to tell if the changes are directly related to the award but I look forward to transitioning to my first faculty position in the coming year!

To find out more about the WMS 2021 congress, visit

This article is presented by the

Education & Development Opportunities Committee.

Published on 24 June 2021.


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