Comenius University students take all steps on the winners’ podium at Falling Walls Lab

This year, the national round of Falling Walls Lab, a competition of innovative ideas, was won by Kristína Macáková from the Institute of Molecular Biomedicine of the Faculty of Medicine of Comenius University. Her pitch involved a breakthrough idea in the research of rheumatoid arthritis. The finale was held on 21 September 2023 at the Science Park of Comenius University.

28. 09. 2023 19.24 hod.
By: CU External Relation Office

Kristína Macáková, a PhD student at the Faculty of Medicine, is researching the use of erythrocytes to combat infections. "This disease affects one percent of all people. Most, however, think that it only affects the elderly and post-menopausal women, but rheumatoid arthritis can occur in young people or even children. The problem is that we don't know why occurs. In our research we go after the origins of rheumatoid arthritis. If we can discover them we hope to improve the treatment which, at the moment, only focuses on symptoms," explains Kristína Macáková. 

Jaroslav Valovčan, a student of the Faculty of Mathematics, Physics and Informatics, whose research focuses on modelling seismic waves, finished second. His goal is to develop a model of automation that would provide accurate calculations. In his research he already proved that the simulated wave field should have an exact height of one wave number, while the corresponding district model must be accurate up to a double of this number. 

Peter Anthony, also a student of the Faculty of Mathematics, Physics and Informatics, finished third. In his research, he created a classifier for detecting malware using a knowledge database. 

A jury of experts consisting of scientists from various disciplines reviewed all entries and chose the winners. Falling Walls Lab Slovakia is part of a worldwide format that gives recognition to exceptional projects of young innovators from various disciplines of science.  

The winner of Falling Walls Lab Slovakia 2023 will represent Slovakia in the international finale of the "Emerging Talents" category among 100 participants from around the world before a jury composed of renowned scientists, innovators and representatives of businesses. The winner will participate in the global finale of the Falling Walls Conference in Berlin, where they will be able to meet the movers and shakers of world-class research. 

The Slovak finale was organised by Comenius University Bratislava in cooperation with the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD). Academic partners include the Slovak Academy of Sciences, Slovak University of Technology, Pavol Jozef Šafárik University in Košice, Technical University in Košice, University of Veterinary Medicine and Pharmacy in Košice, Slovak University of Agriculture in Nitra, University of Žilina and Technical University in Zvolen, Academy of Performing Arts in Bratislava and the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Bratislava. 

Radka Rosenbergová