31 January 2019

Agnites Vrolik Award for research into cardiovascular diseases in women

Dr. ir. Hester den Ruijter (left)

Associate professor Dr. ir. Hester den Ruijter (experimental cardiology, UMC Utrecht) has won the second Agnites Vrolik Award on Thursday, January 31, with her research on cardiovascular disease in women. This award from the Utrecht University Fund is granted to a talented scientist at Utrecht University who conducts research that contributes to answering current societal issues.

The research emphasizes the broader theme of gender in research and pays attention to patient participation while including new research methods.
To quote the jury report

Cardiovascular disease in women

Every year more women than men die from the consequences of cardiovascular disease. Nevertheless, data generated from present day scientific research is seldom presented separately for men and women. Den Ruijter has a personal mission: by the time her six-year-old daughter is mature, every woman should have confidence in the comprehensive scientific foundations for the treatment of cardiovascular disease in women. As such the multidisciplinary clinical study which she currently leads (HELPful) places a specific emphasis on women. Den Ruijter has being motivating well-known Dutch people and organizations to pay attention to this topic and is fast on track to accomplish her mission.

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Leaving a lasting legacy to the university

The Agnites Vrolik Award was established in 2017 by the Utrecht University Fund to show that the impact of UU research is important and deserves rewarding. The awards includes a sum of € 25,000, intended for extracurricular research. Founding this award was possible thanks to alumna mrs. Cobi de Bree who left a legacy to the Utrecht University Fund. In today's rapidly changing society, private contributions for scientific research and education have become more important. The number of alumni, (former) employees or other committed parties who choose to allocate (part of) their inheritance to a university goal is increasing. A good example is a large legacy received by Utrecht University in 2018. More about this will be in the next edition of alumni magazine Illuster, to be published on 19 March.

Agnites Vrolik Award

Dr. Agnites Vrolik studied mathematics and physics at the UU and also obtained his PhD here, in 1836. From 1854 to 1858 he was Minister of Finance. He was the first chairman of the Utrecht University Fund. The winner was selected from 12 nominees, by a jury that this year consisted of: Prof. Barbara Oomen (board member of the Utrecht University Fund and chairman of the jury), Prof. Marca Wauben (Utrecht University), Dr. ir. René Kuijten (alumnus and managing partner of Life Sciences Partners) and Mr. Steven Martina (alumnus and CEO of The Greenery).