University of Copenhagen raising the bar for stem cell research – University of Copenhagen

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20 November 2015

University of Copenhagen raising the bar for stem cell research

Stem cell research

A DKK 235 million grant makes the University of Copenhagen an international beacon within research in biomedicine and biotechnology. The grant, awarded by the Novo Nordisk Foundation, is to strengthen and extend the activities of DanStem, The Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Stem Cell Biology.

New technology, ground-breaking research and retention and recruitment of top researchers in the field of stem cell research. The new DKK 235 million grant from the Novo Nordisk Foundation will help place DanStem in an international pole position, propelling the University of Copenhagen to the forefront of excellent research in stem cells.

"The grant will allow us to continue positioning the centre as an international leader within basic research and translational stem cell research. We can now develop new technologies that allow us to better study the individual cells. We will also examine how cells interact via chemical and mechanical signals, thus enabling us to establish the necessary development programmes for controlling stem cell behavior in both the foetal stage and the adult stage," says Professor Henrik Semb, Managing Director of DanStem.

DanStem was established in 2011 with the overall scientific objective of developing new stem cells for new treatments. In addition, the centre works with basic issues related to stem cells and developmental biology and tries to identify the factors that control the development of our body's different cell types.

New technologies key to the centre's development
DanStem is partially funded by the Novo Nordisk Foundation and currently houses nine research groups with around 100 employees. The centre expects to expand with three new research groups within the next 2-3 years. The new grant will ensure expansion, development and investment in new technologies that are essential for the research conducted at the centre.

"DanStem has produced many promising and interesting research results since it opened its doors in 2011. With the new grant, we clearly demonstrate the highly promising potential of our research which can also raise the bar internationally. Our research is at such a high international level that we, thanks to the new grant, will be able to chart an entirely new agenda in the field of stem cells," says Ulla Wewer, Dean of the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences.

Managing Director Henrik Semb is one of the leading researchers in the field of stem cells. In this video, you can see an interview where he explains about his cooperation with the other centres and departments at the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences. Here, he also talks about on involving young researchers and students in the centre's activities and emphasises the importance of financial support for basic research.


Managing Director Henrik Semb, mail: