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Novo Scholarship 2014 goes to young Aarhus researcher

Cecilie Kirkeby Skeby from Aarhus University has been awarded the Novo Scholarship 2014. She receives the scholarship from Novo Nordisk and Novozymes in the form of financial support for her further research.

Cecilie Kirkeby Skeby carries out research into diabetes and microRNA and she has just received a scholarship from Novo Nordisk and Novozymes for this research.

Novo Nordisk and Novozymes annually award scholarships to young, promising students from Danish universities. The scholarships are awarded to students in the form of one year’s financial support for their further research.

The goal of Cecilie Kirkeby Skeby’s research is to stimulate the division of beta cells in diabetics, so their need for insulin falls.

“Patients with diabetes often have a reduced number of beta cells. These are the ones that produce the all-important insulin. With the help of a circular RNA molecule, I investigate the possibility of increasing the growth of the beta cells by using the circular RNA to inhibit the activity of microRNA-7. MicroRNA-7 can namely inhibit the growth of the beta cells,” says Cecilie Kirkeby Skeby.

The project is as yet only at the cellular level, but in the long run it can mean that the insulin-level of diabetics and prediabetics will probably increase when they take the drug, so that they will not need to take insulin in the future.

A scholarship with many advantages

The Novo Scholarship 2014 means that Cecilie Kirkeby Skeby does not need to have a job alongside her studies. And that is precisely the intention with the scholarship; that the student is able to immerse herself in her studies and research.

This means a lot to Cecilie Kirkeby Skeby.

“I can now put all my time and energy into the research project and that is very important for my future, where I would like to apply for a PhD position. The scholarship also gives me the opportunity to communicate my research to a broader audience and thus hopefully develop my professional network,” says the recipient of the scholarship.

Cecilie Kirkeby Skeby researches under the supervision of Centre Director and Professor Jørgen Kjems, Aarhus University, Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics and Interdisciplinary Nanoscience Center (iNANO), and in cooperation with Associate Professor Kamille Smidt Rasmussen, Aarhus University, Department of Biomedicine.

The scholarship was presented at the Novo Scholarship Symposium on 22 January 2014.

Cecilie Kirkeby Skeby was born on 12 April 1990 on the island of Fanø.

Further information

Master’s degree student Cecilie Kirkeby Skeby
Aarhus University, Department of Biomedicine and Interdisciplinary Nanoscience Center (iNANO)