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Obituary for Senior Researcher Mogens Duch (1958-2016)

Mogens Duch, senior researcher at the Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics, died suddenly on Friday 20 May 2016, aged 58.

2016.05.23 | Lisbeth Heilesen

Mogens Duch

Mogens grew up in Ejstrupholm in the Western part of Jutland and got his senior high-school degree from Ikast Gymnasium before coming to Aarhus to study biology. He was a highly motivated and very open-minded student. After his Bachelor’s degree, he went to Ecuador with a group of biology students for a while and spent some time afterwards taking care of children in kindergartens and nursery schools before beginning his Master’s project with Finn Skou Pedersen.

As part of this project, he implemented a Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) method, which was a new technique at that time and demonstrated his unstoppable entrepreneurship by designing a PCR-machine that went into commercial production around 1988-89.

In 1995, he obtained his PhD-degree, and he has continued ever since along the innovation track being appointed as innovation coordinator at the Department for many years. He was also co-founder and CEO of a spin-out company RetroVec (2004), and co-founder of SkauVaccines (2007) and Enfutech (2007), and later innovation scout and senior researcher at the Department.

Needless to say that he was an inventor on many patents, and he had the unusual ability for an academic to actually be very interested in drafting patents.  His inventive way of thinking generated a constant flow of ideas for new projects that could keep people busy around him.

Mogens had great capacity to remember data and figures from scientific articles, and his enormous knowledge made him a formidable discussion partner, always full of enthusiasm and humor at the same time.

Mogens was a very responsible and forthcoming person in any aspects of his work, from research collaboration to his work as a daily leader of the safety organization.

Our thoughts go out to his three children who have lost a great father

We have lost a good friend and colleague.

Professor Finn Skou Pedersen
Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics, Aarhus University, Denmark