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Russian scientist Anna Akhmanova won the prestigious NWO Spinoza Prize


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Russian scientist Anna Akhmanova is among four leading researchers that received the NWO Spinoza Prize  from Ingrid van Engelshoven, Minister of Education, Culture and Science. The prizes are the highest distinctions in Dutch science.

Anna is a professor of Cellular Dynamics at Utrecht University. She studied in Moscow State University and after graduation (1989) in biochemistry she received her doctorate in Nijmegen (1997) for her work on gene expression in fruit fly. Later she worked as postdoc in Nijmegen and at Erasmus MC in Rotterdam. Since 2011 she is a professor of Cellular Dynamics at Utrecht University.  She is a member of the editorial boards of Elife, Journal of Cell Science and Public Library of Science (PLoS), among others. Since 2015 she is elected member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW).

Currently Anna Akhmanova is one of the world’s leading experts in the field of cell biology of the cytoskeleton. The cytoskeleton is a kind of ‘scaffold’ of microscopic filaments and tubules found in every living cell. It gives cells their shape and sturdiness, but also plays an important role in processes such as cell division and intracellular transport. Akhmanova has made a number of ground-breaking discoveries that reveal exactly what the cytoskeleton’s function is and which mechanisms underlie these functions. Knowledge of how healthy cells function also helps us to understand what goes wrong at the cell level in diseases such as cancer, Alzheimer’s and ALS.

About NWO

The Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research ensures quality and innovation in science and facilitates its impact on society. Its main task is to fund scientific research at public research institutions in the Netherlands, especially universities. NWO focuses on all scientific disciplines and fields of research. The funds are allocated by means of a national competition on the basis of quality and independent assessment and selection procedures. NWO plays several roles as a broad, national research organisation that actively contributes to various elements of national science and innovation policy.

More information on the official NWO website

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