26 August 2020

Niels Mailand is new Research Director at CPR

CPR has promoted influential scientist Niels Mailand to succeed Jiri Lukas as Research Director of the Protein Signaling Program. Niels Mailand’s vision for the program is to develop technology to apply their mechanistic knowledge to more research across CPR.

Niles Mailand

This summer professor Niels Mailand has taken over the role of Research Director for the Protein Signaling Program at CPR. Niels Mailand will also continue his leadership of his own group, which focuses on protein signaling in genome maintenance.

“Exceptional scientist with a huge international influence”

For Executive Director of CPR, Jiri Lukas, the choice of Niels Mailand was an easy one:  “Research directors at CPR need to be globally recognized as leaders in their field of protein science. Ever since I came to CPR, I have been highly impressed by Niels Mailand’s great achievements as a group leader in the Protein Signaling Program and it has been a gratifying experience to follow his growing reputation. Niels is a truly exceptional scientist with a huge international influence; I could not imagine a better ambassador for CPR in the fields of protein signaling and protein-driven disease mechanisms” says Jiri Lukas who has a clear focus on providing incentives to retain senior talents at CPR and ensure they can grow both as scientists and leaders.

Developing program to strengthen internal synergy

Niels Mailand considered the promotion carefully before accepting the offer.

“I have been a group leader at CPR for ten years, which has been both an inspiring and challenging journey. I am highly excited to be given an opportunity to contribute to the strategic management and development of CPR and at the same time further my own leadership experience. I find it very motivating that CPR is actively promoting career development at this level. One major consideration in terms of accepting the offer was whether I would still be able to uphold a strong commitment to my own research group. I am confident this will be possible, but it will be learning by doing,” says Niels Mailand.

He is looking forward to further developing the program.

“I am fortunate to be taking over a program in excellent shape: we have an open, dynamic and interactive culture that I will do my best to nurture and reinforce. One area where I see a potential is in enhancing both intra- and inter-Program synergies within CPR. Understanding the functions of proteins, which is the key mission of our Program, is at the heart of a protein research center such as CPR, and through development of innovative methodologies and biological models we hope to be a natural collaboration partner for deciphering the biological significance of exciting discoveries made at CPR,” says Niels Mailand. Translating the Program’s own discoveries to medical applications is also on his radar for the future.

Broad support and excellent recommendations

Niels Mailand’s potential was evident to more than Jiri Lukas. CPR’s Scientific Advisory Board and the Novo Nordisk Foundation review board, who evaluated the recent application for basic funding to the center, independently approached Jiri Lukas and suggested that Niels Mailand was the right leader to take over the Protein Signaling Program.

Furthermore, in June 2020 Niels Mailand successfully passed his quinquennial review, which all groups at CPR continuously go through to evaluate their scientific performance. Here recognized international peers also assessed his potential as a new research director and gave him excellent recommendations:

“The committee finds that Dr. Niels Mailand is an outstanding scientist. His publication record continues to be outstanding, and he has obtained prestigious awards. (…) He is one of the most prominent scientists in the field of maintenance of genomic stability, worldwide. Dr. Mailand's academic achievements and status clearly justify his promotion to Research Director at CPR,” the committee, which included professors Yosef Shiloh from Tel Aviv University (Israel), Andre Nussenzweig from National Institutes of Health (US), Jessica Downs from The Institute of Cancer Research (UK) and Lene Juel Rasmussen from University of Copenhagen, wrote in their review.


More about Niels Mailand: https://www.cpr.ku.dk/staff/mailand-group/?pure=en/persons/27989