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Prestigious European grant to top scientist from Aarhus University

The European Research Council (ERC) has awarded Professor Poul Nissen from the Department of Molecular Biology, Aarhus University, a research grant of more than DKK 18 million (EUR 2.44 million).

2010.01.19 | Lisbeth Heilesen

Poul Nissen: "This grant is a great recognition of a world-leading research laboratory in structural biology and cell membranes at Aarhus University," says Poul Nissen. "It allows us to compete at the highest international level and take on new challenges in this highly competitive research field." (photo: Lisbeth Heilesen)

Each year, the ERC gives grants to a number of scientists in Europe. These extremely prestigious and very competitive ERC research grants are intended to promote top-quality science in the EU by supporting and motivating the most talented and innovative scientists. They are highly sought-after research grants, and only a few recipients are selected from among thousands of international applicants, where both previous research and visionary ideas for new research are assessed.

Poul Nissen and his research group are recognized in the main area of "Life Sciences and Medicine" as being among the best laboratories in the world based on many years of structural biological studies of ribosomes and cell membranes, where they among other things have been able to show how the ions pumps of the cell funtion. These pumps control and regulate the cell's internal and external environment, and give energy to the body's signal and transport processes such as nerve impulses in the brain and kidney excretion of water and salt. They are affected in many disease conditions such as neurological disorders and cardiovascular disease, and are also key targets for developing new medicines and biotechnology applications.

Briefly about ERC

The European Research Council (ERC) is an initiative that forms part of the European Union's Seventh Research Framework Programme (FP7). It was set up by the European Commission to support frontier research. Unlike other EU-supported research, where the research areas are politically decided and are more application-oriented, the ERC research areas are defined by the scientists themselves. The ERC's total budget amounts to EUR 7.5 billion (2007-2013).

Its main aim is to stimulate scientific excellence by supporting and encouraging the very best, truly creative scientists, scholars and engineers to be adventurous and take risks in their research. The scientists are encouraged to go beyond established frontiers of knowledge and the boundaries of disciplines.

Contact Information

Professor Poul Nissen, Department of Molecular Biology, Aarhus University, Denmark, pn@mb.au.dk, mobile +45 2899 2295.

19.1.2010

Public / media, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics