13 January 2020

For the Students by the Students: “Pitch your Science”


The "PhD Seminar - for the students, by the students" is organized by students from DanStem and students from the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences aiming to provide a structured framework for participants to effectively communicate their research to their peers.

Prior to the seminar day (November 8, 2019), participants had to prepare individual projects (abstract, presentation, flash talk and/or poster) related to their PhD projects, with focus on communication and audience engagement. As a significant social and scientific event, the PhD Seminar aimed to both bridge the gap between groups and sections, as well as strengthen the spirit of community among the students from the different departments located at SUND.

The PhD Seminar consisted of several oral presentations, flash talks and poster presentations by the participating students. Furthermore, we will have a keynote speaker. And last but not least we have arranged for a social program afterwards.

DanStem PhD students Marta Perera and Christine Soliman Sadek Ebeid were awarded best poster prize. 

Course program 

Keynote speaker

Thomas Werge, Department of Biological Psychiatry, University of Copenhagen


Alba Redó Riveiro

Alba Redó Riveiro [DanStem]
Research focus: Early embryogenesis and totipotency

Embryonic stem (ES) cells are pluripotent and have the capability to generate all the tissues of the embryo, but not extra-embryonic tissue such as the placenta. However, a small subset of ES cells has the capability of contributing to both embryonic and extraembryonic tissues, thus making them totipotent. Alba´s main focus during her PhD is understanding the molecular mechanisms of totipotent stem cells. alba.riveiro@sund.ku.dk

Anniek Lubberding
Research focus: Cardiac electrophysiology

Changing the electrical state of a cell is an intricate interplay of ion channels, ion concentrations and metabolic condition, which a.o. controls contraction of the heart, as well as hormone release involved in glucose control. Anniek’s research focuses on cellular and tissue electrophysiology in the heart and the pancreas in different disease and metabolic states - bridging the gap between metabolic and cardiac research. alubberding@sund.ku.dk

Carla Goncalves

Carla Gonçalves [DanStem]
Research Focus: Cell fate decisions in pancreatic progenitors

Carla’s main aim during her PhD is to uncover how pancreatic progenitors choose to proliferate or differentiate during human development. Understanding more about these cells will help design better tissue replacement strategies for the treatment of type 1 diabetes. carla.goncalves@sund.ku.dk

Christa Funch Jensen

Christa Funch Jensen
Research focus: Cardiac electrophysiology in diabetes and obesity 

Diabetic patients have an increased risk of developing life-threatening arrhythmias. During her PhD, Christa aims at elucidating the underlying mechanism behind the origination of these arrhythmias. Hopefully these investigations can help finding novel ways of treating electrophysiological abnormalities in diabetic patients in the future.

David Pladevall Morera

David Pladevall Morera
Research focus: DNA damage and chromosome stability

David is a PhD student at the Center for Chromosome Stability (ICMM). Cancer and other diseases are often driven by genomic alterations, broadly categorized as genomic instability. Chromosomal Common Fragile Sites (CFSs) are evolutionary conserved genomic loci with a high propensity to break and aberrations in these regions are present in the majority of early stage cancers. The main focus of his PhD project is to use an exploratory approach to identify novel proteins involved in maintaining the genomic stability of these poorly understood regions in normal conditions and in response to replication stress. davidpm@sund.ku.dk

Eva Ramos Becares

Eva Ramos Becares
Research focus: Structural and functional characterization of human ZIP proteins.

Because zinc has been shown to be both essential and toxic in excess, whole body and cellular zinc homeostasis is thoroughly regulated by two different protein families: ZnTs and ZIPs. Where ZnT family reduces zinc cytoplasmic concentration and, ZIP family increases its concentration by facilitating cellular uptake or efflux from intracellular compartments.During her PhD, Eva aims to structural and functional characterize a member of the human ZIP family. Structural information of a ZIP family member will shed light on their fundamental zinc transport mechanism and uncover how mutations and dysregulation cause related diseases, which may eventually pave the way for zinc-flux modulating therapeutics. evabecares@sund.ku.dk

Goda Snieckute

Goda Snieckute
Research focus: Cellular response to stress

Cells have the capacity to cope with external stress. They do so by activating signaling cascades that result in the appropriate biological response. The MAP kinase is essential for stress response and is activated by different stressors such as UV light, inflammatory cytokines and osmotic stress. Goda’s main aim is to elucidate a physiological role of p38-signaling pathway in UV-induced skin inflammation and sunburn formation. godas@sund.ku.dk

Jennifer van der Horst

Jennifer van der Horst

Research Focus: Vascular Biology

Jennifer accomplished her master thesis project in vascular research, focusing on the microtubule network in smooth muscle cells of the arterial wall and identifying a new mechanism that regulates arterial tone. She has recently started her PhD at the Department of Biomedical Sciences (BMI) where she will continue to investigate this novel mechanism in the vasculature. Jennifer works with murine models and the myograph technique to investigate changes in arterial tone of isolated blood vessels. jennifer.horst@sund.ku.dk 

Joana Larupa dos Santos

Joana Larupa dos Santos
Research focus: Understanding the molecular mechanisms of cardiac arrhythmia.

Joana has been doing het PhD at the ion channel group, Department of Biomedical Sciences. She is a human biologist investigating transcriptional changes underlying cardiac arrhythmia in humans and large animal models. Joana.santos@sund.ku.dk

Ronja Linn Sybille Heyne

Ronja Linn Sybille Heyne [DanStem]
Research focus: Ronja is a PhD student at the Danish Stem Cell Center and her group works on liver development in the zebrafish.

As it is highly important for a functional body that every organ has exactly the right size, her project is focused on liver size control and how the liver senses its size to know when it has to stop growing. heyne@sund.ku.dk

The seminar was funded by:

  • Graduate School of Health and Medical Sciences
  • Department of Biomedical Sciences (BMI)
  • Center for Protein Research (CPR)
  • Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Stem Cell Biology (DanStem)
  • SL fonden / Academic book