This week’s employee – Lars Herfindal

Can you tell us something about your daily tasks and work in general?

I have been appointed here as a professor of pharmacology for almost five years. Prior to that, I was a member of the group of Stein Ove Døskeland, where I also earned a Doctorate in Cell Biology. My work is twofold, teaching and researching. I have responsibility of teaching pharmacology for pharmacists. It is a challenging field, consisting of several disciplines, such as physiology, pathophysiology, cell biology, biochemistry, drug chemistry, to mention some. Luckily, I have skilled co-workers who help me pull the load. Our goal is to constantly prepare for teaching, so that pharmacists have a good basis for practical use of pharmacology when going to work.

Research takes time, and is a way of life and a hobby (pleasure-staking activity that you do in your spare time) as much as work. During the time here I have built up the research activity around the development of new therapies for cancer, focusing on new molecules, and nanomedicine. We have also looked up systems where we use zebrafish larvae to find both the toxicity and effectiveness of new molecule sandand. With me in the research I have a small group of PhD students, master-student  and researchers , who take care of most of the practical work. It’s a good time when it’s needed, but most of the time is enough in the office.
I’m so lucky to be part of several collaborative project working on drug development. It is very inspiring to meet skilled researchers in other disciplines, who can fill in my knowledge hole.

What do you like working at K2?

I applied to K2 because I saw that it was a varied research environment, and expertise that allowed me to develop as a researcher. Although it is in many ways similar to the Department of Biomedicine, where I came from, the close-up of the clinic is a huge advantage at K2. I’ve had the opportunity to work with clinicians, who make sure that my research abruptly come much more closer to the patient. There are also a lot of people at K2, and a lot of people who helped me get started right after I started here. Without that help, it would be much harder for me to get started with my research. I would also add that teaching is actually quite nice, so long as they get enough time to prepare. All in all, K2 is a nice place to work.

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