Karlijn Keijzer Scriptieprijs 2020 awarded to Femke Hendriks

Hendriks carried out her BSc research project within AIMMS

01/18/2021 | 1:48 PM

Recently the sixth Karlijn Keijzer Scriptieprijs has been awarded to Femke Hendriks, MSc student in Drug Discovery and Safety at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (specialization: Drug Discovery and Safety Assessment). In 2020 Femke obtained her BSc degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences cum laude. During her BSc studies at the VU she carried out a research project within the research division of Molecular and Computational Toxicology, under the challenging times of the first wave of COVID-19, and in an excellent way. With great dedication and accuracy, Femke worked on unpublished transcriptomic data pertaining to the effects of aristolochic acid on culture human kidney cells. The data were previously obtained by her supervisor prof. Paul Jennings in experiments at the Medical University of Innsbruck, within the CarcinoGENOMICs project. Aristolochic acid is a frequent contaminant in a variety of herbal products that are traditionally used against e.g. inflammation or obesity. With her research Femke has obtained new insights into triggered cellular responses that potentially lead to renal injury and renal carcinoma.

Femke carried out her research eagerly and showed great aptitude in data analysis, scientific writing and presentation, as demonstrated by the high quality of her final report. During her BSc studies she was active as a student information officer, and in 2018 she received the Young Talent Award from the Royal Holland Society of Sciences and Humanities (KHMW). In conclusion, the jury is convinced that the Karlijn Keijzer Scriptieprijs has again been awarded to an excellent and highly motivated student.

Karlijn Keijzer Scriptieprijs
The Karlijn Keijzer Scriptieprijs is established in memory of Karlijn Keijzer, who was aboard the fatal MH17 flight. Karlijn finished her MSc studies in Drug Discovery and Safety (DDS) at the Vrije Universiteit cum laude in 2012, with a specialization in Computational Medicinal Chemistry and Toxicology. For her PhD studies she joined the Computational Chemistry group of professor Baik at Indiana University in Bloomington, to study amongst other organometallic complexes of therapeutic interest. In September 2014 she was posthumously awarded her doctoral degree. As a PhD student, Karlijn regularly visited the VU. In 2014 she obtained an Aspasia research grant to stay with the Biocomputational Chemistry group in the Division of Theoretical Chemistry. karlijn-keijzer

In line with Karlijnā€™s intellectual legacy and interests and to stimulate talented and ambitious students in their scientific development and (international) experience, the Karlijn Keijzer Scriptieprijs is presented annually as a travel grant of EUR 1000. The award recipient will be selected by a jury based on excellence and motivation; candidates must have successfully completed a BSc research project in the field of pharmaceutical sciences or (bio)chemistry. Supplemented by the VU Department of Chemistry and Pharmaceutical Sciences and a private donation, resources for the award have been made available by the family from a donation fund for Karlijn.

Because of the current corona situation, the annual award ceremony will take place later this year.