Aarhus University Seal

Research into child leukaemia honoured

Medical Doctor, PhD Torben Stamm Mikkelsen from Aarhus University and Aarhus University Hospital has just received a personal award of DKK 100,000 from William Nielsen's Foundation. The award is recognition of his research into leukaemia in children.

Leukaemia is the most common type of cancer in children. Each year, 40-50 children in Denmark contract leukaemia, which accounts for almost one third of all child cancer cases. Leukaemia affects the body's blood cells, causing the number of normal blood cells to decrease. This leads to the body's immune system being weakened and a tendency towards infections. Torben Stamm Mikkelsen conducts research into how children with leukaemia can be individually treated. He has just received the William Nielsen's Foundation award for this research.

"I am very pleased with the personal award. It gives me the opportunity to travel to the USA and visit the other Scandinavian countries to participate in collaborative meetings and begin new projects, so that we can become even better at treating children with leukaemia," says Torben Stamm Mikkelsen.

Leukaemia in children is most often treated with what are known as cytotoxins that kill the cancer cells. These are injected directly into the bloodstream. The treatment may cause side effects such as an increased risk of infection, reduced appetite, fatigue and nausea. Torben Stamm Mikkelsen studies how treatment can be individualised, so that it takes account of whether the children have an increased risk of developing side effects.

"We would like to increase monitoring and supportive treatment for those children who have an increased risk of developing side effects due to the treatment. In this way, we can hopefully minimise the extent of the side effects," says Torben Stamm Mikkelsen.

William Nielsen's Foundation supports scientific research, particularly the fight against cancer, at faculties of medicine, mathematics and natural science at Danish universities. 

Further information

Medical Doctor, PhD Torben Stamm Mikkelsen
Aarhus University, Department of Clinical Medicine
Aarhus University Hospital, Department of Paediatrics
Direct tel.: (+45) 7843 3605
Mobile: (+45) 5356 6513