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Linda Wass conducts postdoctoral research at Stanford University with funding from the ALF Foundation

Linda Wass conducts postdoctoral research at Stanford University with funding from the ALF Foundation

Linda Wass

A thousand medel. Biomedical analyst Linda Wass has just settled into Stanford University in California, where she will work for two years as a postdoctoral fellow. She is the first non-physician to conduct postdoctoral research internationally funded by the ALF Foundation.

During her first week on site at Stanford, Linda Wass had to focus on implementing several practical procedures – access card, workplace, telephone, and US Social Security number. She lives in transition in an apartment in an apartment complex for visiting scholars at Stanford University.

Linda lives here!

– It's like a holiday complex, with furnished apartments, swimming pool and gym. All of my neighbors are also postdoctoral researchers at Stanford. Linda Wass says: We have to live here until we find another housing solution.

She adds that she is amazed at how beautiful the surroundings are and how impressive the Stanford campus is.

The first non-doctor

Linda Wass completed her thesis last winter.

Linda Wass defended her thesis just before Christmas with a thesis on the relatively recently discovered bacterial infection, caused by bacteria. Neohrlichia micorensis. This bacteria is spread among ticks in Sweden and in large parts of Europe. The supervisor was Christine Wennerås. For several years, Linda combined her thesis work with clinical work as a biomedical analyst, which she felt truly enriched her research. It is important for her that research results are translated into new analyzes and methods that can be used in everyday clinical life. Completion of the thesis was accelerated when I obtained an ALF position for PhD students, as the first biomedical analyst.

Linda Vass has now become the first non-PhD researcher to participate in the ALF Västra Götaland Foundation's pilot investment in international postdoctoral researchers.

ALF stands for International Postdoctoral
Hälso-sam is implementing this investment as a pilot project. These ALF funds provide the opportunity for a doctoral researcher active in a licensed health profession to retain half the salary from the Västra Götaland region for up to twelve months in connection with an international post-doctoral stay. Applicants for these funds must also have obtained other means of stipends or scholarships for their livelihood while living abroad.
Here you can read more about ALF funds for international postdoctoral researchers:
ALF Funds for International Postdoctoral Researchers – ALF Västra Götaland (
ALF Funds Guidelines for International Postdoctoral Programmes.pdf (

– The ALF Foundation funds have meant a lot and I am so happy to receive the support again. I hope it will inspire others interested in empirical research to apply for ALF. I also think it is very good that those responsible for the ALF in Gothenburg are clearly encouraging other health professions to apply for funding.

Well-equipped laboratory

During her thesis, Linda had the opportunity to work with the advanced Helios mass cytometry instrument, which is operated using CyTOF technology. It's a multi-million instrument, but thanks to external funding, there is one in clinical chemistry at Sahlgrenska University Hospital.

– It's an amazing tool, where you can study patients' immune memory at the single-cell level. Linda says it is possible to obtain a great deal of information about, among other things, specific cell groups, intracellular proteins, and surface markers in patients.

Stunning scenery around Stanford.

Its new laboratory in California has a complete set of machines containing the instrument, one of which Gutenberg is proud to own, thanks in large part to donations from the Gates Foundation. The laboratory is headed by Holden T. Maker, a professor of microbiology and immunology and director of the Center for Human Immune Surveillance at Stanford University. It was Kristin Lingblum, Linda's co-supervisor, who recommended that she apply here. Christine Lingblum herself was previously a postdoctoral researcher in the same group, and praised the research environment and its research leader.

As a postdoctoral fellow, Linda Wass is now changing her focus from bacteria to viruses. The project is about cytomegalovirus, part of the herpes family, and how this virus affects T-cell lymphoma cancers.

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-I love microbiology, and I previously thought that I would like to develop myself further through virus research. For me, it's an opportunity to add a piece of the puzzle, and it's exciting to learn more about how the immune system responds to viruses, says Linda Wass.

Written by: Ellen Lindstrom