Leena Karimi

+45 53 692 656

Leena Karimi, born in Kabul, Afghanistan, is a Ph.D. student in the Center for Single Particle Science and Engineering (SPSE) at University of Southern Denmark (SDU). She obtained her bachelor degree in Biomedicine in 2012 from SDU. In June 2015, she obtained a M.Sc. in Biomedicine from SDU within cancer research. Recently, she is doing her Ph.D. project in the Center for SPSE under joint supervision by Prof. David Needham and Prof. Jan Mollenhauer (NanoCan). In her Ph.D. project, Leena is mainly working within the field of cell-screening, - cytotoxicity and – pathways, in particular within delivery/targeting studies in prostate cancer and prostate cancer stem cells. The main goal is to test the efficacy of free drugs and drug-loaded nanoparticles and correlate it with characterization studies performed on these specific cell lines. During her education, Leena has completed several scientific projects in different research groups, which have all given her valuable knowledge and experience in different areas of research within molecular biology, neurobiology, and oncology. During her studies, Leena has been very engaged in student related jobs. She has been an academic mentor (2011-2015) and a teaching assistant (2012-2014) at the institute of BMB at SDU.


  • 2015-Present: Ph.D. student at University of Southern Denmark, Odense, Denmark

  • 2012-2015: University of Southern Denmark, Odense, Denmark Cand. Scient Biomedicine

    • Master Thesis awarded 12 (A), entitled “Evaluation of fatty acid metabolism as target for breast cancer therapeutics’’. ITEK-project awarded 10 (B) entitled “High-throughput protein quantification of PTEN in breast cancer stem cells’’.

    • Individual study activity project (10 ECTS) awarded 12(A), entitled ‘’ New protein biomarkers in invasive tumor cells in gliomas”.

  • 2009-2012: University of Southern Denmark, Odense, Denmark B.Sc. Biomedicine

    • Bachelor Thesis awarded 12(A), entitled “The effect of intravenous injection of anti-TNF therapy on ischemic brain damage’’.

Professional Experience

  • 2015-2015: Research Assistant, SPSE, University of Southern Denmark, Odense, Denmark

  • 2011-2015: Academic Mentor, Elite & Support, University of Southern Denmark, Odense, Denmark

  • 2012-2014: Instructor at Southern University of Denmark, Odense, Denmark


  • Bettina-Hjelm Clausen, Mathilda Degn, Nellie-Anne Martin, Yvonne Couch, Leena Karimi, Maria Ormhøj, Maria-Louise Bergholdt Mortensen, Hanne-Birgit Gredal, Chris Gardiner, Ian IL Sargent, David E Szymkowski, Géraldine H Petit, Tomas Deierborg, Bente Finsen, Daniel Clive Anthony and Kate Lykke Lambertsen (2014). “Systemically administered anti-TNF therapy ameliorates functional outcomes after focal cerbral ischemia”. Journal of Neuroinflammation 11(1): 1-17

  • David Needham, Amina Arslanagic, Kasper Glud, Pablo Hervella, Leena Karimi, Poul Flemming Høilund-Carlsen, Koji Kinoshita, Jan Mollenhauer, Elisa Parra, Anders Utoft, and Prasad Walke, (2016) “Bottom Up Design of Nanoparticles (to eventually treat cancer): “Put the drug in the Cancer’s food”, invited paper, submitted to Special issue of J. Drug Targeting in honor of Pieter Cullis, Life-time Achievement Award for 2016, accepted, in press.


  • Poster Presentation: Leena Karimi, Pablo Hervella, Kasper Glud, Jan Mollenhauer, David Needham, “Novel Formulation of Orlistat for the Treatment of Breast Cancer” Presented at the Clinical Nanomedicine and Targeted Medicine Conference (CLINAM), Basel, Switzerland, 2016. - Winner of the Second Price in the category “Basic Nanomedicine”, signed by Prof. Dr. Yechezkel (Chezy) Barenholz.