Monday, 22. January 2024

Denisa Cont wins tecnet/accent Innovation Award 2023

Denisa Cont, PhD student in the Department of Water Quality and Health (KL) and at the Centre for Biomedical Technology (UWK), was honoured with the tecnet/accent Innovation Award. 

Fltr: Accent Inkubator-Geschäftsführer Michael Moll, Landeshauptfrau Johanna Mikl-Leitner, die Preisträgerin Denisa Cont sowie Vizerektorin Viktoria Weber und tecnet equity-Geschäftsführerin Doris Agneter.

The award ceremony took place on 16 January at the Landhaus St. Pölten, where Cont was honoured for her research work in the field of improved endotoxin detection in blood samples.

Endotoxins are central components of the outer membrane of gram-negative bacteria and can enter the bloodstream during bacterial infections. As part of the GFF-NÖ funded project "HepBinProt", a co-operation between UWK and KL, Cont is investigating heparin-binding antimicrobial proteins in human blood plasma. These proteins play an important role in the defence against bacterial infections and open up new avenues in the diagnosis and treatment of endotoxin-induced diseases such as sepsis.

The tecnet/accent Innovation Award recognises Cont's research achievement, which significantly increases the sensitivity and accuracy of the Limulus Amebocyte Lysate (LAL) test, the standard method for endotoxin detection, and underlines the importance of inter-university collaboration.

Cont is currently developing flow cytometric detection methods at KL to test the effectiveness of newly isolated antimicrobial proteins against bacteria.