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The President’s Cultural Foundation announced the laureate of the Young Scientist Award

The Board of the President of the Republic’s Cultural Foundation gathered at Kadriorg today to choose the laureate of the Young Scientist Award.

The Board decided to give this year’s award to Allen Kaasik, aged 31. Kaasik has studied biochemistry at Tartu University (BSc in 1992) and also defended there his medical doctor’s degree (1998). Now, Allen Kaasik is working at the Institute of Pharmacology of Tartu University as an Extraordinary Senior Researcher. His research is connected with the search of new, highly prospective medicines that could be applied for curing neurodegenerative diseases and mitigating brain damages caused by coronary heart disease. Even though the ageing of humankind increases the rate of neurodegenerative diseases, no efficient remedies have yet been discovered. For this reason, the search of possible remedies and identification of their functioning mechanisms is one of the main trends of modern neurosciences.

The Young Scientist Award is 40,000 EEK, and the award is financed by Toomas Luman. Last year, the first Young Scientist Award went to Priit Kogerman.

The laureate of the award will attempt to reach an agreement with Estonian higher education institutions to give at least two free lectures on his theme of research during this academic year.

The considerable number of high-level applications also inspired the Board of the Cultural Foundation to issue another award of 30,000 kroons to Hill Kulu. Hill Kulu is a senior researcher of the Institute of Geography of Tartu University, and her research has mostly concentrated on the inhabitation of ethnic minorities and the migration of population.

This year, 21 applications had been submitted for the competition. Indrek Neivelt, Chairman of the Board of the Cultural Foundation, said that the level of the applicants was very high, and that the myth about lack of young scientists in Estonia is not true. It is rather so that the Estonian public does not know the young scientists well enough – the media should pay more attention to their research work.

The President of the Republic will hand over the award to Allen Kaasik tomorrow, on October 2, at 2 PM.

Press Service of the Office of the President
Kadriorg, October 1, 2001


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