Congratulations to Annemieke Aartsma-Rus

You may have met Annemieke at the PPMD conference. She is wonderful and brilliant and committed to our sons.

NWO has awarded Vidi-grants to outstanding research and researchers: Annemieke Aartsma-Rus of Leiden LUMC The Netherlands wins the prize!

The Dutch Organization for Scientific Research (NWO) has awarded 89 young, innovative scientists a so-called Vidi-grant. Each researcher will receive a grant amounting up to 800,000 euro aimed at developing an own line of research and also establishing a research team for a period of five years. In total NWO will distribute more than 70 million euros to the winners.

Vidi is targeting outstanding researchers who have done successful research after the PhD. The researchers proved their capabilities to come up with innovative ideas and bringing them successfully and independently into a development stage. The scientists are among the best ten to twenty percent in their field. With the Vidi-grant they can do further research and establish a research team for a period of five years.

Annemieke Aartsma-Rus, working at the Department of Human Genetics Leiden LUMC, is honored with this Vidi-grant. Our supporters do know Annemieke not only for the great research she does towards a cure for Duchenne, but also of her lectures at Duchenne conferences, where she is able to explain results of academic research in layman's terms.
Annemieke is planning to spend the money in the following research area:
Genes do consist of exons (carrying protein information) and introns (not carrying protein information). Before a protein can be made from a gene, there is just a copy of the gene (RNA) being made. Thereafter, in the process called splicing, introns are being cut and exons are put together. The exon skip therapy invades the splicing process (ensuring one exon is left out). As the DMD gene is very large, limited knowledge exists regards to a smooth splicing process. Recently, a new method has become available for analyzing this major gene ultimately resulting in better insight into the splicing process of DMD. This will contribute to further optimization of exon skipping and potentially more complex exon skip applications (e.g. multiexon skipping and exon skipping for duplications) could be developed.

We are pleased and very proud of Annemieke and congratulate her warmly with this outstanding achievement.

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Comment by RAKTIM SINGH on December 11, 2009 at 11:49am
Congrats to Annemieke. She is really brilliant and fully committed to her work. It's great that she is working for our cause.
Comment by Jacobs Mommom on December 10, 2009 at 11:32am
I have not met her in person but she was kind enough to answer one of my emails so I know that she is very dedicated and tells it like it is which is my kind of gal:) Congratulations Annemike!

Comment by Pat Furlong on December 10, 2009 at 9:33am
totally agree. She is brilliant, dedicated and kind. I love it that she is on our team!
Comment by Ofelia Marin on December 10, 2009 at 9:31am
This is really great. Congratulations to her!
Comment by cheryl cliff on December 10, 2009 at 9:19am
Paul and I will send her a message of congratulations. As a scientist she is very deserving of this award and a really nice person too!

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