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Lisbon researcher gets set-up grant

EMBO Installation Grant provides Lars Jansen with funding & support

HEIDELBERG, GERMANY - Lars Jansen from the Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência (Gulbenkian Institute for Science) in Oeiras, near Lisbon, is the recipient of an EMBO Installation Grant assisting him to establish a new research group in Portugal. Dr. Jansen will receive funding beginning in 2009, similar to the previous seven awardees announced in December 2008. EMBO Installation Grants support young group leaders relocating to selected European countries committed to developing their research infrastructures. The grants offer 50,000 euro annually for three to five years to help the scientists establish their groups and themselves in the European scientific community. The 36-year-old moved from California to Portugal last year to head the Epigenetic Mechanisms group. His new team currently consists of five researchers. Their work focuses on chromosome segregation, specifically the formation of the centromere, a key cellular structure in powering and controlling chromosome segregation and accurate cell division. The project was also recognized with a paper in Nature Cell Biology published at the end of June this year in collaboration with a group at Stanford University. According to Lars, the grant “will give a huge boost to our research. It is a great recognition of the relevance of our current work and the science we propose. Moreover, access to the EMBO Young Investigator Programme allows me to fully integrate our newly established laboratory in the larger European scientific community.” EMBO Installation Grants are awarded annually and aim to strengthen science in selected member states of the EMBC, the EMBO intergovernmental funding body. The EMBC Member States hosting the grantees finance the grants entirely. EMBC Member States participating in the scheme include Croatia, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Poland, Portugal and Turkey. Lars Jansen’s grant will be jointly financed by the government funding agency, the Portuguese Science and Technology Foundation, and by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation that supports his host institute. Grantees join the EMBO Young Investigator community, providing networking opportunities with some of Europe’s best young group leaders and a range of career development programmes. “We congratulate Lars Jansen as recipient of an EMBO Installation Grant and welcome him to the EMBO community,” said Gerlind Wallon, EMBO Deputy Director and Young Investigator Programme Manager. “These talented scientists will benefit from the secure financial backing of their host countries plus the active interest and support of EMBO in their scientific and professional development. They represent a promising scientific future for the countries receiving them and for Europe as a whole.” This is the second time that EMBO has rewarded a project developed by scientists from the Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência. In 2007, Mónica Bettencourt-Dias was also awarded an EMBO Installation Grant to get her group started and establish herself in the European scientific community.


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