Monthly Archives: December 2021


Merry Christmas and happy holiday season!

Then another year will soon be over. Autumn is often experienced as hectic due to application deadlines, congresses, meetings and new student cohorts. And the semester is relatively short compared to the spring semester. So now that time is almost running out for us, it is good to be able to look forward to a holiday with the opportunity for peace and reflection.

Covid-19 has unfortunately become an increasing challenge this autumn despite a large degree of vaccine coverage in the population. The pandemic is turning research and teaching upside down for most of us. Hygienic measures such as social distancing, face masks and alcohol washing, as well as communication and teaching through digital media, have required a lot from the individual and the organizations, including K2. But it has been great as a leader to see how well you have coped with this upheaval with acceptance and constructive measures. Thank you very much!

Although we have learned a lot of new things in many areas through digital forms of communication, it is understandable that many are starting to get tired of social distancing and a number of hygienic measures. I still think we will emerge stronger from the pandemic, even though there are some things that have been delayed or made more difficult. And it is important to turn the situation into something positive. What can we do more efficiently and better? Will it be easier to find peace to write applications and articles? Can the national and international networks be strengthened since it does not matter where we live?

Despite covid-19, 2021 has been a good year for K2. Employees have published in the best journals and been awarded prizes. Employees been successful in fierce competition for funding from the Research Council of Norway (Camilla Krakstad, Emmet McCormack, Yenan Bryceson), the Norwegian Cancer Society (Camilla Krakstad, Emmet McCormack, Hans Petter Eikesdal, Stian Knappskog), the Novo Nordisk Foundation (Bergithe Oftedal, Simona Chera, Stefan Johansson) to name a few. Eva Gerdts received the award for Research / Innovation Environment of the Year from the Faculty of Medicine and the Research Group of the Year at Helse Vest. Furthermore, King Olav V’s cancer research prize was awarded to Bjørn Tore Gjertsen. Congratulations again to everyone!

It seems that we are reaching our goal of external research funding for 2021. We are very proud of that. K2 coordinates one SFF application (signed) and is a partner in another (Anagha Joshi). We hope that at least one of these will make it! Thanks to Silke and Emmet for being temporarily willing to move up!

For many, Christmas is the highlight of the year where family and friends gather for a holiday full of traditions and a sense of belonging, followed by Christmas in space, which can provide opportunities for other activities at home in Bergen, trips to the mountains or elsewhere. Covid-19 unfortunately places restrictions on this again this year, but then we get the opportunity to form even closer ties within our own family.

What most of us take for granted is not necessarily the case for everyone. Some have lost someone they loved or have no close friends or family gathered this year. Do we manage to think extra hard about these and maybe include them in our own Christmas celebration?

With wishes for a peaceful Christmas and all the best for 2022.


Christmas is approaching and with that, a new round of application deadlines is approaching again. In this context, I would just like to remind you to report via the following form that you are seeking external funds. This will ensure both good application support and that one of our economists is assigned to help with the budget. And I would also like to remind you that there are sources of funding other than NFR, such as the EU. I encourage you to attend UiB’s information day on 14 January 2022 in the aula (NB! Requires registration by 31.12.21, follow the link for more information and the registration form.

I hope you take care of each other also in this year’s Christmas season dictated again by Corona restrictions, despite cancelled joint activities.

Have a really good weekend!

Applying for SPIRE-midler 2022

You can now apply for SPIRE-fundings in the following 2 categories:

  1. Fundings for international research collaboration
  2. Fundings for guest researchers

Read more about guidelines, categories and who can apply in website: SPIRE – Såkornsmidler | Forsknings- og innovasjonsavdelingen | UiB

All applications must be written in attached application form. See link at the bottom of the website.

Applications must be sent by email to Head of Administration Maria Holmaas, email within 31st of December 2021.


The economy is tightening

It’s never nice to talk about finances when it’s getting worse. Unfortunately, the economy will be tighter in the future.

The Corona pandemic has so far entailed several extra expenses for UiB, which are now distributed among the faculties according to the size of their basic grant. Since the Faculty of Medicine is one of the largest faculties, we therefore get one of the biggest cuts in the budget for the next three years. Our faculty takes most of the bill, but some is distributed among the departments, also here according to the size of the basic grant. For K2, this means a cut of approx. NOK 2.2 million annually for the next three years.

Unfortunately, this is just the beginning. Upon its departure, the Solberg Government served a major cut for all universities in Norway. A change in pension financing means that the university and college sector will no longer pay pension costs as a fixed percentage of the salary base but will pay for actual pension costs throughout the year. Together with some other measures, more than a billion kroner will be cut for the universities as a whole. Unfortunately, the new Støre Government has not only sustained it, but rather increased it. This is a permanent cut in the basic allocation to the universities. That means a weakened economy for K2 in the years to come. We will try not to withdraw positions and look for other ways to reduce costs. And then there is the issue of increasing our revenues: external financing is becoming more important than ever. So, get on with the applications. K2 cheers on you!

In this new situation, it is important that we have a common understanding of the challenge and that we must stand together in this. Then there is also an opportunity to be innovative and find new solutions that can even improve our primary tasks: research, teaching, innovation and communication. And for the record: K2 Retreat 2 on Solstrand is going as planned. That will be a good opportunity to discuss across research groups, teaching groups, staff groups and organizational units – alternative and better ways of working with somewhat less use of resources.

We will make it through this! Let’s develop an even better K2.

Have a great weekend!

Pål R. Njølstad
Department Head

New publications

Here are newer publications with contribution from researches at K2. The list is based on last weeks literature search on PubMed. This week it includes 6 publications. They are listed based on the order in which they appear in the email alert from NCBI. If you have publication(s) not included in this list, please send the reference to Jens Vikse.

1. A Gene Signature Identifying CIN3 Regression and Cervical Cancer Survival.
Halle MK, Munk AC, Engesæter B, Akbari S, Frafjord A, Hoivik EA, Forsse D, Fasmer KE, Woie K, Haldorsen IS, Bertelsen BI, Janssen EAM, Gudslaugsson E, Krakstad C, Øvestad IT.
Cancers (Basel). 2021 Nov 16;13(22):5737. doi: 10.3390/cancers13225737.
2. Diagnostic Accuracy of Liquid Biopsy in Endometrial Cancer.
Łukasiewicz M, Pastuszak K, Łapińska-Szumczyk S, Różański R, Veld SGJGI’, Bieńkowski M, Stokowy T, Ratajska M, Best MG, Würdinger T, Żaczek AJ, Supernat A, Jassem J.
Cancers (Basel). 2021 Nov 16;13(22):5731. doi: 10.3390/cancers13225731.
3. Breathing patterns in people with exercise-induced laryngeal obstruction.
Lie AH, Grønnevik I, Frisk B, Røksund OD, Hammer I, Vollsaeter M, Halvorsen T, Clemm HH.
Physiol Rep. 2021 Nov;9(22):e15086. doi: 10.14814/phy2.15086.
4. Thrombosis and Thrombocytopenia after HPV Vaccination.
Johansen S, Laegreid IJ, Ernstsen SL, Azrakhsh NA, Olsnes Kittang A, Lindås R, Gjertsen BT, Vetti N, Mørtberg TV, Sørvoll IH, Holme PA, Ahlen MT, Reikvam H.
J Thromb Haemost. 2021 Nov 24. doi: 10.1111/jth.15604. Online ahead of print.
5. Genetic alterations associated with malignant transformation of sporadic vestibular schwannoma.
Håvik AL, Bruland O, Miletic H, Poulsgaard L, Scheie D, Fugleholm K, Lund-Johansen M, Knappskog PM.
Acta Neurochir (Wien). 2021 Nov 24. doi: 10.1007/s00701-021-05062-0. Online ahead of print.
6. Artifacts on Magnetic Resonance Imaging from Electronic Identification Enablement in Silicone Gel Implants Are Not Negligible.
Kurz KD, Kallevåg Ø, Austrått K, Styr B, Leiknes JB, Krøger P. Plast Reconstr Surg Glob Open. 2021 Nov 22;9(11):e3941. doi: 10.1097/GOX.0000000000003941. eCollection 2021 Nov.