On 22nd March 2019, Dr Antoun Al Absi was handed a prize for his outstanding PhD thesis by the “Société de Biologie de Strasbourg” (Strasbourg Society of Biology) in Strasbourg, France. A great recognition for the research work of this former PhD candidate from LIH.
Dr Al Absi has been carrying out his PhD from 2014 to 2018 at the Cytoskeleton and Cancer Progression Research Group in the Laboratory of Experimental Cancer Research at LIH’s Department of Oncology under the supervision of Dr Clément Thomas and with the support of an AFR PhD grant from the Luxembourg National Research Fund (FNR). In July 2018, he successfully graduated from the University of Strasbourg where he has been enrolled at the Doctoral School of Life and Health Sciences.
The young researcher had been investigating the role of the actin cytoskeleton in breast cancer cell resistance and identified a previously unknown mechanism named the “actin response”. It leaves tumour cells unharmed by Natural Killer cell-mediated cytotoxicity, one of the body’s immune responses against abnormal cells. The molecular players of the actin response may be interesting targets for new therapeutic strategies. The PhD project led to a first-author publication in the renowned journal Cancer Research in August 2018.
Dr Al Absi was invited to present his PhD findings and future perspectives during the Doctoral School Days 2019 of the Doctoral School of Life Sciences and Health of the University of Strasbourg. At this occasion, the “Société de Biologie de Strasbourg” honoured him with a Thesis Prize given each year to promising young PhD holders in the field of biology. His thesis was selected following thorough reviewing by the Executive Board of the society. Dr Al Absi was one of eight awardees, each receiving the Thesis Prize from a different sponsor.
“I am more than proud to receive the Thesis Prize, knowing that my work was selected among more than 100 applications. I am thankful to my PhD supervisor and the research team for their invaluable support that led to the research results I presented today”, states the awardee after the ceremony.
About the “Société de Biologie de Strasbourg”
This learned society was created in 1919 based on the model of the national “Société de Biologie” in Paris. Its mission is to promote scientific knowledge in biology and act as a platform of exchange between the scientific community and society. This year, the SBS held the 20th edition of the Thesis Prizes Ceremony.
Dr Antoun Al Absi receiving the Thesis Prize from the "Société de Biologie de Strasbourg"