For the first time since the lifting of COVID-19 restrictions, the Jühling Award event was held in person, with prizes awarded to the winners before an audience. Each year, the Anna Wunderlich and Ernst Jühling Foundation awards the prize to young researchers working in interdisciplinary and cross-institutional teams on innovative projects in the field of diabetes research. Similar to last year’s event, two projects were chosen from the applications, with both receiving €10,000 in funding.
The event was moderated by Professor Ertan Mayatepek, the Deputy Chairperson of the Board of Trustees. He noted the high level of interdisciplinarity and the exceptional quality of the winning projects and presented certificates to Dr. Kálmán Bódis and Dr. Patricia Wischmann for their joint project “Role of percutaneous transluminal angioplasty for wound healing and dynamics of the microbial community in patients with type 2 diabetes and diabetic foot syndrome”. Bódis is a resident physician at the University Hospital of Düsseldorf (UKD) in the Department for Endocrinology and Diabetology and conducts research at the Institute of Clinical Diabetology at the DDZ. His project partner Dr. Patricia Wischmann is a specialist physician at the UKD Department of Cardiology, Pneumology, and Angiology.
The project from the research team consisting of Dr. Geronimo Heilmann, Marlene Piribauer and Pia Marlene Förster also received an award. Their research topic “Identification of lipid-induced PKCԑ interactome” is a joint project from the Institute of Clinical Diabetology and the Institute for Clinical Biochemistry and Pathobiochemistry at the DDZ. Both project groups will present the initial findings of their award-winning projects next year.
At this year’s event, last year’s prize winner Dr. Lucia Mastrototaro presented her team’s project “The impact of exercise on mitochondria remodeling and cristae ultra-structure in skeletal muscle cells in vitro”. Afterwards, Dr. Jenny Khuong, on behalf of the group headed by Dr. Delsi Altenhofen and Dr. Nadine Müller, presented the preliminary findings from their work on “Kdelr3 role in T2D diabetes susceptibility and pancreatic beta cell function”.
The closing Jühling Lecture was given by guest speaker Professor Martin Heni from University Hospital Ulm. His talk on insulin resistance in the brain and its related effects on the entire metabolism and body fat distribution was followed with intense interest by those present and subsequently discussed in detail. Professor Heni’s innovative work impressively highlights the significance and possibilities of translational diabetes research. He convincingly demonstrated that only through interdisciplinary cooperation can obstacles and challenges be overcome and new insights into the prevention and treatment of diabetes be obtained. New joint projects between DDZ researchers and Prof. Heni have already begun. During his lecture, it was clear that he was deeply impressed by the quality of the winning projects. “The innovative work at DDZ plays a crucial role in promoting the treatment and prevention of diabetes while making an important contribution to the provision of healthcare,” said Heni.
The Application Phase for the Next Jühling Award begins at the end of June 2023.
About the Foundation:
The Anna Wunderlich and Ernst Jühling Foundation for Diabetes Research at the Faculty of Medicine at Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf and its affiliated institute, the German Diabetes Center (DDZ), has in the past awarded the Jühling Prize and the Jühling Award for Doctoral Students, among others. Since 2021, the trust foundation has been awarding the Jühling Award, together with a funding amount of up to €10,000, for outstanding scientific work in research into diabetes mellitus and the complications of diabetes.
About the DDZ:
The German Diabetes Center (DDZ) serves as the German reference center for diabetes. Its objective is to contribute to the improvement of prevention, early detection, diagnosis and treatment of diabetes mellitus. At the same time, the research center aims at improving the epidemiological data situation in Germany. The DDZ coordinates the multicenter German Diabetes Study and is a point of contact for all players in the health sector. In addition, it prepares scientific information on diabetes mellitus and makes it available to the public. The DDZ is part of the Leibniz Association (Wissenschaftsgemeinschaft Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz, WGL) and is a partner of the German Center for Diabetes Research (DZD e.V.).