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University of Copenhagen
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Copenhagen gets DKK 885m donation for diabetes

The University of Copenhagen has landed a huge financial donation from the Danish health and pharmaceutical fund, the Novo Nordisk Foundation. The money is earmarked for research into metabolic diseases, such as diabetes and obesity

The DKK 885 million (around USD 160 million) grant from the Novo Nordisk Foundation is the largest public donation to research in Danish history.

The money will finance a new research centre called ‘the Novo Nordisk Foundation Centre for Basic Metabolic Research’ with five top international researchers.’

The centre will open 1 October 2010 in a new building at the Faculty of Health Sciences (Panum).

Global epicentre

The centre will carry out research into lifestyle diseases including Type 2 diabetes and obesity related illnesses.

»This magnificent donation will transform Copenhagen into a global epicenter for metabolic research,« explains Dean Ulla Wewer from the Faculty of Health Sciences in a University of Copenhagen press release.

»The Centre will establish a framework for leading researchers within the field. We will acquire the knowledge and facilities [..] to understand the [..] development of metabolic disease, which continues to affect more and more people around the world.«

Enormous problem, enormous donation

In the light of the rise in the prevalence of lifestyle illnesses around the world, »the size of the donation must be equal to the enormity of the challenge faced by researchers«, says chairman of the Novo Nordisk Foundation, Ulf J. Johansson.

»The donation of 885 million kroner should be seen in light of the staggering increase in the incidence of metabolic diseases. Even though these are commonly referred to as lifestyle diseases, their incidence is spread throughout the world and is not only prevalent in affluent society.«

Ulf J. Johansson awards the donation to Dean Ulla Wewer today Monday March 22 at a ceremony at the Lundsgaard Auditorium, Faculty of Health Sciences.