Recruitment of a global leader in vascular biology will continue to place Finland at the forefront of biomedical research.
Professor Taija Mäkinen has been appointed the Wihuri Research Institute Director (WRI) and Professor of Translational Medicine (35%) at the Faculty of Medicine in a joint appointment by Jenny and Antti Wihuri Foundation and the University of Helsinki.
Professor Mäkinen has made fundamental discoveries in lymphatic vascular biology and is widely recognized as one of the rising stars in this field increasingly relevant to cardiovascular disease, degenerative disease, cancer, and obesity. She is currently Professor at the Department of Immunology, Genetics and Pathology, in Rudbeck Laboratory, at Uppsala University in Sweden.
“I feel excited about this opportunity to further shape an internationally competitive environment for vascular research that is able to attract young talent globally. I devote myself to further strengthening the WRI and the Faculty of Medicine,” notes Mäkinen.
Professor Mäkinen is to succeed Academician Kari Alitalo as the WRI Director to lead an outstanding institute focused on cardiovascular disease, vascular biology, and stem cell research. The Wihuri Research Institute, located at Biomedicum Helsinki, is founded and funded by the Jenny and Antti Wihuri Foundation.
“The research area of Professor Mäkinen has great continuity with the existing strengths of the WRI, and her appointment will continue to place Finland at the forefront of this exciting area of biology and medicine,” says Executive Director Arto Mäenmaa from the Jenny and Antti Wihuri Foundation.
The longstanding collaboration between the Faculty of Medicine with Wihuri Research Institute enabled the joint call of Jenny and Antti Wihuri Foundation and University of Helsinki.
“The Meilahti campus represents one of the top European medical hubs with excellent opportunities for collaboration in translational and clinical research. The partnership between the Faculty of Medicine and WRI enables us to continue to attract top talent globally. We often talk about brain drain, but this time we get to integrate a top researcher with a long career abroad, into our community and faculty”, comments Dean Anne Remes from University of Helsinki.
Professor Mäkinen will start in her WRI position during 2024.
The appointment decision of the Wihuri Research Institute Director was made by Jenny and Antti Wihuri Foundation’s Board of Trustees, based on the proposal by the WRI Scientific Advisory Board. The appointment of the Professor was made by the Rector of University of Helsinki.
Executive Director Arto Mäenmaa, Jenny and Antti Wihuri Foundation:
+358 50 2536, email@example.com
Dean Anne Remes, University of Helsinki:
358 (09) 294125099, firstname.lastname@example.org
Professor Taija Mäkinen:
+46-70 4250 360, email@example.com