07 November 2017

Three SUND Researchers Receive Prestigious Prizes from the Lundbeck Foundation


Three young researchers from SUND have received the Lundbeck Foundation Fellowship, Talent Prize and Research Prize for Young Scientists, respectively.

Each year the Lundbeck Foundation awards a series of prestigious prizes, and this year the prize winners included three SUND researchers.

Research Prize for Young Scientists to Professor Janine Erler
Professor Janine Erler from BRIC has received the Lundbeck Foundation’s Research Prize for Young Scientists, which is a personal, honorary award of DKK 300,000 given to young scientists under the age of 40. The prize is awarded to acknowledge a particularly promising scientist who has produced outstanding research within the health and medical sciences.

Janine Erler does research into how the microenvironment of tumours helps to stimulate cancer cell growth, invasion and metastasising. Among other things, she has shown that the LOX enzyme plays a main role in invasion and the spread of cancer by changing the environment around tumours, making it more favourable for cancer cells.

Her laboratory recently developed a ground-breaking new method for exposing tumour and tissue structures by removing living cells and leaving the surrounding structure around the cells intact. In addition, she has established a project on precision medicine for patients with metastatic cancer together with clinical collaborators at Rigshospitalet.

Fellowship for Associate Professor Christoffer Clemmensen
Associate Professor Christoffer Clemmensen from the Novo Nordic Foundation Center for Basic Metabolic Research has received the Lundbeck Foundation Fellowship, which is awarded to particularly promising young researchers. The recipient must have completed his PhD within the past five-seven years and be deemed qualified to establish and run a research group within the health and medical sciences. Christoffer Clemmensen’s fellowship will run for a period of five years and comprises DKK 10 million.

Christoffer Clemmensen does research into energy-yielding metabolism and why a modern lifestyle for many people result in unwanted excess weight and complications such as type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Christoffer focusses on understanding how specific transmitter substance systems in the brain prevent satiety signals from restraining the (excess) intake of tasty, high-energy and low-nutrient foods.

For that purpose, Christoffer Clemmensen’s research group is systematically mapping the molecular mechanisms in the brain’s reward system and aims to use this new insight to develop potent therapeutic interventions that can restrain (over)eating-related lifestyle diseases.  

Talent Prize for Postdoc Christian Laut Ebbesen
Postdoc Christian Laut Ebbesen from the Department of Neuroscience has received the Lundbeck Foundation’s Talent Prize of DKK 100,000 kroner, which is given once a year to scientists under the age of 30 who have conducted particularly promising research within the health and medical sciences.

Christian Laut Ebbesen does research into the brain’s network for social behaviour. Social interactions such as coupling and raising offspring are main aspects of the pattern of life of both humans and animals. By mapping changes in brain activity and the brain’s hormonal balance – e.g. when being touched – we gain knowledge that may form a basis for new ways of treating mental conditions characterised by social disorders such as social anxiety, postnatal depression and autism spectrum diagnoses.

The prizes and fellowships were awarded on the evening of Monday 6 November to a total of 11 scientists.