Researcher receives distinguished research grant
Mogens Johannsen from Aarhus University has received Ingeborg and Leo Dannins Scholarship for Scientific Research for 2014. In addition to the recognition, the award includes DKK 350,000 towards the implementation of new research initiatives in the area of biological ageing.
Professor Mogens Johannsen’s area of research is biological ageing and he has just received Ingeborg and Leo Dannins Scholarship for Scientific Research. The scholarship has been awarded in recognition of his dedicated efforts within the development of chemical substances that can help to increase our understanding of the biological ageing process.
“We examine how fat and the carbohydrate metabolism affect the biological ageing process. To shed light on this we develop small chemical probes that can map the places where the body’s cells are particularly vulnerable to damage as a result of ageing,” explains Mogens Johannsen.
The objective is to find the correlation between the individual damage and the diseases that are related to age.
“For many years now we have known that sugar in particular can lead to a number of changes in the body’s biopolymers, which are again linked to diseases such as diabetes and Alzheimer’s,” says the professor.
Will ensure a healthier old age
The problem has been to single out the changes leading to the disease. Mogens Johannsen therefore hopes that with the research, it will be possible to pinpoint the central locations, so that researchers can in future focus more on working to curb the development of the disease and ensure a healthier old age.
“With the award we have the opportunity to appoint a senior researcher to the project during an important phase, in which we go from the development of our chemical probes to more systematic use in various biological systems. At the same time, we must phase in new researchers who will take the project further in the longer term,” he says.
The project is a collaboration between the Department of Forensic Medicine, the Department of Chemistry and the Department of Clinical Medicine.
Mogens Johannsen emphasises that the recognition means a lot because he is receiving it for a new type of interdisciplinary research, one that draws on knowledge within chemistry to solve problems or challenges in the health sciences.
“The field is commonly referred to as chemical biology. We therefore view the award as an indication that the work we are doing is moving in the right direction.”
Ingeborg and Leo Dannins Scholarship for Scientific Research is awarded annually to a prominent researcher within the field of either medicine, odontology, or technical science.
The scholarship was presented at a ceremony in lecture theatre B at Aarhus University Hospital on Monday 31 March, 2014.
Professor Mogens Johannsen
Aarhus University, Department of Forensic Medicine
Direct tel: +45 8716 8332