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The prize for promising researchers in gerontology 2022 is awarded to Ida Karlsson, SWEAH supervisor

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Photo: Gunilla Sonnebring

Ida Karlsson's connection to the graduate school SWEAH is strong. She is the main supervisor of Peggy Ler, SWEAH doctoral student. She has also taken the postdoctoral course "From junior to senior researcher in research on aging and health" and participated in SWEAH's mentoring program for postdoctoral fellows.

The focus of Ida Karlsson's research is the genetic epidemiology of ageing, where she uses genetic and epigenetic methods to better understand the ageing process. Her research interests are how and why obesity at different ages affects the risk of cognitive decline, dementia, cardiovascular disease and diabetes. She is also interested in how physical and mental health changes in preclinical dementia.

Can you describe your link to SWEAH?

- SWEAH has been an important network for me as a junior researcher, both to make contacts with other researchers in the field and to get an overview of all different directions in Swedish research on ageing. SWEAH's postdoc course and mentorship program were very rewarding, both for practical help with e.g. applications and CVs, and to gain insight into what a career in research on ageing means (and requires). I am now a supervisor for a doctoral student within SWEAH, and I am very happy that from the beginning to take part in the support and the opportunity for further development that exists within SWEAH.

How come research on ageing interests you?

- Since my undergraduate degree was in biomedicine, I like to see things from a rather molecular point of view, and I think I got hooked on research on ageing because it's so interesting from a biological perspective - it happens so much during the period of ageing! In addition, I of course think it is a very important area - this research is really needed so more people can be able to meet a healthier ageing.

What does the price mean to you?

- The award means a lot, and I feel really honored. I am at an early stage in my career where I have only worked on designing my own research line for a couple of years, and the award is both an important recognition and an opportunity to spread information about my research. I am very grateful for all the help and support I received along the way! I have been lucky enough to have absolutely fantastic supervisors and mentors, both as a doctoral student and as a postdoc, and to now be able to work with very talented students.
Ida Karlsson has already worked in several different research environments and has established research collaborations with gerontologists at the University of Edinburgh. In addition, she has been a visiting researcher at Fulbright for six months at the Department of Psychology, University of California Riverside, USA during the Fulbright program with Professor Chandra Reynolds.

More about the price here:
The prize for promising researchers is SEK 20,000 and is sponsored by the Nordic Gerontological Federation.
The prize will be awarded at the inauguration ceremony of the 26th Nordic Congress of Gerontology in Odense, Denmark, on 8 June 2022.
Ida Karlsson will give a prize lecture of 26NKG in Odense, Denmark, on June 10, 2022.