The Novo Nordisk Foundation has awarded a five-year grant of DKK 10 million (approximately €1.3 million) for a research project headed by Professor Outi Mäkitie, investigating childhood-onset osteoporosis and its genetic causes.
For several years, Professor Mäkitie’s group has been investigating factors underlying increased bone fragility. Chronic diseases and their treatment may predispose patients to osteoporosis. In addition to external factors, genes also play an important role.
The project supported by the Novo Nordisk Foundation aims to identify new genes that regulate skeletal metabolism by investigating children with early-onset osteoporosis or proneness to fractures, as well as families with occurrences of the same disorders. The identification of genetic causes enables early diagnosis, effective prevention and the development of novel forms of therapy.
The Advanced Grant awarded by the Novo Nordisk Foundation is intended to support top Nordic researchers whose research topics relate to endocrinology and metabolism. The grant recipient is chosen by the foundation’s Committee on Endocrinology and Metabolism based on applications. Being awarded the grant requires that the project be of the highest scientific quality, have a forward-looking approach, and that the main applicant possess significant expertise at the international level.
Professor Mäkitie is serving in the position of professor of paediatric endocrinology, funded by the Sigrid Jusélius Foundation. She is currently completing a year-long research period at the Imagine institute and the Necker-Enfants Malades hospital, both in Paris. At the moment, the research group comprises seven doctoral students, several postdoctoral and senior researchers, research nurses and laboratory staff. Mäkitie’s group will receive DKK 2 million annually for five years.