Wednesday, 18 November 2015

2015 LRI Innovative Science Award Winner Announced

French researcher Dr. Alice Limonciel was awarded the €100,000 LRI Innovative Science award, one of Europe’s largest research grants for early career scientists, at an award ceremony at Cefic’s 17th Annual Long-Range Initiative (LRI) Workshop in Brussels on November 18, 2015.

Dr.  Limonciel’s winning research proposal is entitled "Establishment of thresholds of activation of stress
responses pathways and ligand-activated receptors for chemical classification” and will investigate cellular responses to the acceleration of chronic kidney disease progression due to chemical exposure. The project aims to identify the genes involved in cellular stress response pathways, quantify these responses in parallel with markers of cellular dysfunction and deliver a new generation of quantitative tools based on gene expression to evaluate the hazard linked to chemical exposure for use in risk assessment strategies.

Dr. Pierre Barthélemy, Cefic Executive Director of Research and Innovation commented: “It’s always a pleasure to see the enthusiasm of early career scientists and their desire to make our world safer. The LRI Innovative Science is a great opportunity for them to develop their breakthrough ideas with complete freedom, find new approaches to tackle risk assessment and help reduce uncertainty as it relates to chemicals safety”.

Dr. Limonciel (pictured above, right, receiving the award from Yves Verschueren Managing Director of Essenscia)  studied pharmacology and toxicology at the engineering school Polytech’ Nice-Sophia in France. She completed her doctoral studies in the department of Physiology and Medical Physics at the Medical University of Innsbruck, Austria in 2013.  Dr. Limonciel is currently working at Innsbruck as a Postdoctoral researcher on molecular mechanisms of nephrotoxicity notably using the integration of multiple omic datasets such as transcriptomics, proteomics, metabolomics and epigenomics.

A video from the LRI Award ceremony 2015 is embedded below. 

The award ceremony and dinner were the highlights of the first day of the 2015 Annual CEFIC-LRI Workshop. The second day of the workshop will focus on non–animal-based safety assessment and will showcase the outcome and impact of several LRI projects completed in 2014-2015 from the fields of environmental risk assessment, bioconcentration, chemo-informatics, exposure modelling, skin sensitization and acceptance of innovation.

About the Award
The LRI Innovative Science Award worth €100 000 was first introduced in 2004 as a funding opportunity for young scientists based in Europe. Its aim is to stimulate innovative research, to foster ‘out-of-the-box’ thinking and to introduce new approaches that will advance the environmental assessment of hazardous substances. More than a decade later, it is still the biggest award of its kind in Europe and has helped numerous scientists realise their ambitions and become part of the LRI scientific network.

The Long-range Research Initiative (LRI) is part of Cefic's voluntary initiatives to improve the Regulatory Framework of the chemical industry in Europe. Its mission is to identify and fill gaps in our understanding of the hazards posed by chemicals and to improve the methods available for assessing the associated risks.

For more information on the LRI activities and the award, please contact Programme Manager Bruno Hubesch.

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