16 January 2023

Four researchers receive DKK 114 million to expand knowledge of the human brain


Four ambitious research projects at the Department of Drug Design and Pharmacology will give new insights into the human brain. The aim is to pave the way for new treatments of diseases such as Parkinson’s disease, schizophrenia, substance use disorder and many other conditions. The projects are part of the Lundbeck Foundation's Collaborative Project programme.

The professors
Top left: Professor Kristian Strømgaard, bottom left: Professor Anders A. Jensen. Top right: Professor Stephan Pless, bottom right: Professor David Gloriam.

Department of Drug Design and Pharmacology (ILF) at the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences (SUND) receive four grants totalling DKK 114 million from the Lundbeck Foundation’s Collaborative Project-programme.

The programme’s objective is to give the Danish neuroscience research community a boost by funding interdisciplinary partnerships, both at home and with international partners.

The Collaborative Project-programme seeks to strengthen the synergies from research teams and research profiles by bringing them together and utilizing their different specialist knowledge, competencies and data, says Lars Torup, Scientific Programme Director at the Lundbeck Foundation.

Testifies to a powerful research environment

SUND’s dean of research Hans Bräuner is pleased for ILF to have received the grants and congratulates the four Professors Kristian Strømgaard, David Gloriam, Stephan Pless and Anders A. Jensen:

“As Associate Dean of Research, I am very impressed with the fact that Department of Drug Design and Pharmacology has received four LF Collaborative Projects grants. It testifies to a very powerful research environment for neuroscience at the department and a strong tradition for collaboration – key conditions for grants of this kind,” says Hans Bräuner.

Rasmus Prætorius Clausen, Interim Head of Department at ILF, highlights that the projects will not only generate important knowledge on molecular mechanisms in the brain’s function, but also enable novel avenues for treating CNS disease in the future.

We are very grateful to the Lundbeck Foundation for awarding the grants to Professor Kristian Strømgaard, Professor David Gloriam, Professor Stephan Pless and Professor Anders A. Jensen to conduct these four ambitious projects over the next five years. The projects are very relevant and highlight the diversity and high quality of our research environment. The award of the four grants further demonstrates the strong neuroscience expertise at the Department of Drug Design and Pharmacology, and testify to the attractiveness of our research environment, as each of the four research projects is conducted in collaboration with world-leading experts from abroad,” says Rasmus Prætorius Clausen.

The projects, project leaders and collaboration partners are:

  • Professor David Gloriam, “Data-driven drug design tools to target therapeutic over adverse effects”, collaborating with Amy H. Newman, Scientific Director, NIH, Professor Bryan L. Roth, University of Carolina and Professor Ulrik Gether, HoD, UCPH.
  • Professor Kristian Strømgaard, “Regulation of biomolecular condensates at the PSD: balancing diseased states of neuronal signaling”, collaborating with Professor Mingjie Zhang, Southern University of Science and Technology (SUSTech).

  • Professor Stephan Pless, “The role of an evolutionarily conserved sodium leak current in brain development and disease”, in a collaboration with Professor Mei Zhen, University of Toronto.

  • Professor Anders A. Jensen, “From psychedelics to novel therapeutics: Positive allosteric modulators of the BDNF receptor TrkB” in collaboration with: Professor Eero Castrén, Professor Ilpo Vattulainen and Research Director Sari Lauri from University of Helsinki, Professor Gitte Moos Knudsen from Neurobiology Research Unit, Rigshospitalet Professor Jesper L. Kristensen and Research Consultant Kasper Harpsøe, University of Copenhagen.