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Prestigious prize awarded to leading blood-vessel researcher

Christer Betzholtz
Christer Betsholtz (Photo: Göran Ekeberg)

Christer Betsholtz, professor at Uppsala University, has been awarded the major Nordic Prize for 2021 by the Eric K. Fernström Foundation. This is one of Scandinavia’s largest research prizes in medicine, and Christer Betsholtz is being recognised for his research into vascular structure and function.

The motivation for the award states that “His research has been of essential significance for our understanding of how blood-vessel cells cooperate to achieve the functional balance required to maintain efficient blood circulation”.

“It was surprising, gratifying and flattering. I am grateful to the person or persons who nominated me and to the prize committee that selected me, in what I am convinced was extremely tough competition. I can name many researchers in the Nordic countries who deserve this prize more than I do, in my opinion”, says Christer Betsholtz.

Christer Betsholtz is a leading vascular researcher and has charted the communication between different types of cells in the blood-vessels and studied how they develop and form. Two types of cells particularly captured his interest: endothelial cells, which form the inner tube of our blood-vessels, and pericytes, a cell type included in all blood capillaries, which are the body’s smallest blood vessels.

The Eric K. Fernström Foundation at the Lund University Faculty of Medicine awards the Eric K. Fernström Nordic Prize every year to an outstanding medical researcher from one of the Nordic countries. The six local Eric K. Fernström prizes as well as the Nordic Prize will be awarded during a popular science event, Research Day, on 10 November in Lund . The theme of this year’s Research Day is “Hype or help? What can AI do for our health?”(in Swedish).


Christer Betsholtz

Professor of tumour and vascular biology at Uppsala University, 
and professor of vascular biology at Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm

+ 46 70-9796690
christer [dot] betsholtz [at] igp [dot] uu [dot] se or christer [dot] betsholtz [at] ki [dot] se