Prof. Mart Saarma

Mart Saarma is Professor of Biotechnology and Director of the Laboratory of Molecular Neuroscience at the Institute of Biotechnology, University of Helsinki. In 2015-2016 he served as the Vice President of the European Research Council and, from 2011-2016, as a member of the EMBO Council. He is a member of several academies, EMBO and Academia Europea.


Dr. Saarma’s group has characterized several new GDNF family receptors, discovered a new neurotrophic factor CDNF, and shown that it very efficiently protects and repairs dopamine neurons in animal models of Parkinson’s disease. Currently CDNF is in Phase I-II clinical trials on Parkinson’s disease patients.

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