The Anders Jahre Medical Prize 2020 is split between a former DNRF head of center and current group leader at CARD

03. June 2020

Two of the country’s leading cell growth and cancer researchers, Professor Jiri Bartek and Professor Jiri Lukas, are the recipients of the Anders Jahre’s Medical Prize 2020, a prestigious research award. Professor Lukas is the former head of center at the Center for Genotoxic Stress (GENOTOXIC), funded by the DNRF between 2005 and 2015, and Professor Bartek is the unit leader at the Center of Excellence CARD at the Danish Cancer Society. Together, the two researchers – and longtime colleagues – have received the award for their work on key cellular processes and mechanisms related to cancer.

The image shows the front and back of the Anders Jahre medal.
The image shows the front and back of the Anders Jahre medal. Photo: Lill-Ann Chepstow-Lusty, Kulturhistorisk museum.

Two of Denmark’s top researchers in cell growth and cancer, Professor Jiri Bartek and Professor Jiri Lukas, are the recipients of the prestigious Anders Jahre’s Medical Prize 2020. Professor Lukas is a former head of center at the Center for Genotoxic Stress (GENOTOXIC), which was funded with a grant from the DNRF between 2005 and 2015, and Professor Bartek is the unit leader of the research group on genome integrity at the Center of Excellence CARD at the Danish Cancer Society. The prize has been awarded to the two researchers – and longtime colleagues – for their work with cellular processes and mechanisms related to cancer.

The two Professors received the prize for their groundbreaking work registering how proteins involved in the regulation of cell cycles and DNA reparation contribute to protecting genes and prohibiting the development of cancer.

“I am honored and at the same time humbled to receive the Anders Jahre’s Medical Prize. Honored because it is a great privilege to be included in the list of past recipients, who are, without exception, the leaders in their biomedical fields, some of whom I consider to be role models for my research. Humble because I fully realize that none of my achievements could have been achieved without the many amazing talents that I have had the privilege of working with. And I’m very happy to share this award with Jiri Bartek. Our collaboration over several decades is a lasting testimony to how beneficial scientific synergy can be when one wants to unravel the great mysteries of cell division that are of direct importance to the understanding of the etiology and the treatment of cancer,” said Lukas.

Together with their research colleague Michael Straus, the two professors built a research unit for cell growth and cancer at the beginning of the 1990s at the Danish Cancer Society. With a grant from the DNRF in 2005, the unit developed into the Center of Excellence GENOTOXIC, with Professor Lukas as the head of center. Both Bartek and Lukas are among the most cited researchers in Scandinavia, and their research paved the way for new principles within cancer treatments.

Two Anders Jahre prizes are awarded every year: the Young Scientist Prize and the Medical Prize, latter given to honor medical research of the highest quality in fundamental and clinical medicine. Both prizes are awarded by the University of Oslo and are among the largest prizes given in biomedical research in Scandinavia.

The Anders Jahre’s Medical Prize includes a monetary award of NOK 1 million, which will be split between Professor Bartek and Professor Lukas.

More information about the prize for Professor Bartek and Professor Lukas can be found here