Ten outstanding Austrian researchers were honored with the Lower Austria State Science Awards on Tuesday evening. The recognition award, each awarded 11,000 euros, went to Sonia Vallet and Gerhard Weber.
Italian Sonia Vallet, who does research in Krems, has been dealing with cancer for more than 20 years. Her international career recently brought her to the private Karl Landsteiner University and Krems University Hospital. There, the Italian searched for significant results on the loss of muscle, bone and fat mass in oncological diseases. The jury was particularly enthusiastic about their “vision of the research field network on the Krems campus and the surrounding area for the benefit of the people.”
Gerhard Weber of Mödling also received the award. At the University of Vienna deals with the evolution of humans and their ancestors. The jury particularly emphasized his research work on the rock from which Venus of Willendorf was made: it is believed that the olite came from northern Italy. Even if it is not certain where this statue was made, it can be concluded that early hunter-gatherer cultures exchanged information across the Alps.
Promotion and recognition of young researchers
While the Commendation Award honors life’s work of national importance, the Appreciation Award highlights self-contained scientific achievements. It serves to promote scholars who have already found professional recognition for their work. This year, they include psychologist Julian Burghardt, chemist Nicole Dorr, physician Thomas Gremmel, and food microbiologist Katherine Cooper-Richley.
Early-career academics were also honored with the “Wissenschaft Zukunft Preis” on Tuesday evening. In addition to Alina Lenzer for her Bachelor’s thesis on mitochondria and Jacob Tona for her diploma thesis on nationwide logistics development, Claudia Kulm for developing rapid molecular test methods in her thesis and Klemens Kremser for developing a method for extracting metals from waste from waste incineration plants, Excellent.
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