Focused on understanding the molecular mechanisms leading to neurodegenerative disorders

Focused on understanding the molecular mechanisms leading to neurodegenerative disorders

Magdalini Polymenidou is an Assistant Professor at the Institute for Molecular Life Sciences, University of Zurich. Her research is focused on understanding the molecular mechanisms leading to neurodegenerative disorders, such as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) and Frontotemporal Lobar Degeneration (FTLD).

Originally trained as a pharmacist in Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (Greece), she received her PhD in 2006 on prion diseases in the laboratory of Adriano Aguzzi at the University Hospital of Zurich (Switzerland). In 2008, she joined the group of Don Cleveland at the University of California in San Diego (USA) as a postdoctoral fellow, where she used genome-wide approaches to decipher the function of RNA-binding proteins associated with ALS and FTD.

She is one of the 28 young researchers selected by EMBO (European Molecular Biology Organization) as EMBO Young Investigators. Τhe 28 will join a network of 47 current and 417 past Young Investigators who represent some of the best up-and-coming group leaders in the life sciences in Europe and beyond. The new Young Investigators are based in 11 different countries, including two European Molecular Biology Conference (EMBC) Associate Member States, India and Singapore. Selection to the EMBO Young Investigator Programme is recognition of exceptional research and scientific potential. Through the programme, EMBO identifies and supports some of the best researchers under 40 years of age who are in the process of establishing their own laboratory. During their three-year tenure, EMBO Young Investigators receive a range of benefits, including an award of 15,000 Euros and possible additional funds to support the establishment of their first independent laboratories. Laboratory management and non-scientific skills training as well as PhD courses offer the young group leaders and their students the chance to develop professional skills. The scientists also receive access to core facilities at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory in Heidelberg, Germany, and funding for themselves and their group members to attend conferences.

Magdalini Polymenidou is also coordinator of the Gender Equality Committee of the Neuroscience Center Zurich. When not in the lab, Magdalini enjoys playing with her son Lennart, who was born in San Diego in September 2012.