Agnete Kirkeby is an Associate Professor and group leader at the Department of Neuroscience at University of Copenhagen (Denmark) and at the Wallenberg Center for Molecular Medicine at Lund University (Sweden). Agnete and her group has over the years built up a unique expertise in using human pluripotent stem cells for production of subtype-specific human neurons, and has developed protocols for accurate patterning of neural cells towards different regional fates (Kirkeby et al., Cell Reports 2012). This work has led to the development of a promising stem cell treatment for Parkinson’s Disease (PD), which is moving towards clinical trial in collaboration with Prof. Malin Parmar at Lund University, Prof. Roger Barker at Cambridge University and Novo Nordisk A/S (Kirkeby et al., Cell Stem Cell 2017, Nolbrant et al., Nature Protocols 2017, Kirkeby et al., Prog. Brain Research 2017).
The Kirkeby group further studies early brain development using human stem cell and advanced microfluidic culturing techniques to model the developing neural tube of humans, and produce various different types of neurons (i.e. hypothalamic neurons, interneurons, basal forebrain cholinergic neurons) for use in regenerative therapy and disease modelling.