Björn Ekwall Memorial Foundation (BEMF)

Student Travel Bursaries

Besides presenting the BEMA at a conference aimed at in vitro toxicology for the last 20 years, we have also awarded students through travel bursaries to the same conference where the BEMA is presented.

Our main sponsor for the BEMA student award has so far been Willy and Berit Heymans Djurskyddsstiftelse.

The following students have been awarded for their work towards animal free toxicological testing:


21st International Congress of the European Society of Toxicology In Vitro (ESTIV 2022), Barcelona-Sitges, Spain, 21-25 November 2022

Tena Cadez , Biochemistry and Organic Analytical Chemistry Unit, Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health, Zagreb, Croatia

Poster: Neurotoxic Effect of Potential Countermeasures in Case of Nerve Agent Poisoning

Anouk Verhoeven , Ph. D. student, Faculty of Medicine and Pharmacy, Vrije Universiet Brussell, Jette, Belgium

Poster: An Adverse Outcome Pathway Network for Liver Steatosis Induces by Chemicals

Zachary Sitte , Ph.D. student, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA

Oral presentations: 1. Supported Gel Slabs: Decreasing the Barrier of Entry for use of 3D Cell Cultures in the Drug Discovery Workflow and 2. Developing a Method to Incorporate Laminar Flow into Scaffold-Based 3D Cell Cultures for More Physiologically Relevant Nutrient and Drug Delivery


The 11th edition of the World Congress on Alternatives and Animal Use in the Life Sciences, Virtual Congress, Maastricht, The Netherlands

Saskia Galanjuk, Ph. D. student, Leibniz Research Institute for Environmental Medicine, Duesseldorf, Germany.

Poster: The Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell (HIPSC) Test as an Alternative Method for Developmental Toxicity Testing.

Julia Hartmann, Ph. D. student, Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf and IUF-Leibniz Research Institute, Düsseldorf, Germany.

Poster: Optimizing the Generation of Human Induced Neuronal Progenitor Cell (hiNPC)-Derived Functional Neuronal Networks for use as Alternative Models in Neurotoxicity Testing.

Michelle Jäschke, Ph. D. student, TissUse GmbH, Berlin in cooperation with Technische Universität Berlin, Berlin, Germany

Poster: Kidney-on-a-Chip – Integrating Glomerular Filtration and Tubular Reabsorption Models.oster: Kidney-on-a-Chip – Integrating Glomerular Filtration and Tubular Reabsorption Models.


The ecopa SSCT Workshop in Helsinki, Finland 14-16 June 2017

Atena Malakpour , Ph.D. student, Lund University, Sweden

Oral presentation: Novel 3D Cell culturing Scaffolds for Breast Cancer Cell Research - For better prediction, efficacy and less animal use.

Outi Huttala , Ph.D. student, FICAM, Tampere University, Finland

Poster: In Vitro Vascularized Adipose Tissue Model.


ESTIV 2016, Palais des Congrès de Juan-les-Pins, Juan-les-Pins, France October 17-20, 2016

Chloe Raffalli , Ph.D. student, Dept. of Immuno-toxicology, Paris-Sud University, France

Oral presentation: Oxidation of Cell Surface Thiol Groups by air-oxidized terpenes triggers the activation of Nrf2.

Karoline Buyl , Ph.D. student, Dept. of in vitro toxicology and dermato-cosmetology, Faculty of Medicine and Pharmacy, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium.

Poster: Reprogramming of umbilical cord-derived mesenchymal stem cells towards hepatocyte-like cells by repeated transfection with in vitro transcribed mRNA of hepatic transcription factors.


The 30th meeting of the SSCT, organized in collaboration with the Swedish Toxicology Sciences Research Center (SweTox), at Bommersvik, Sweden, 13-15 October 2015

Andy Forreryd, Ph.D. student, Department of Immunotechnology, Lund University, Sweden

Oral presentation: Prediction of Chemical Respiratory Sensitizers Using GARD, a Novel In vitro Assay Based on a Genomic Biomarker Signature.