Mette Ørskov Agerbæk

Mette Ørskov Agerbæk

Assistant Professor

Member of:

  • VAR2CSA team



2019 -            Assistant Professor at University of Copenhagen

2018 -            Director Discovery & Preclinical Development at VarCT Diagnostics ApS

2017 - 2018    Project leader at VarCT Diagnostics ApS

2016 - 2017    Maternity leave

2016 - 2019    Postdoc at University of Copenhagen


Academic qualifications

2016               PhD in Health and Medical Science, Faculty of Health, University of Copenhagen. PhD thesis: Development of new methods for cancer diagnostics using malaria proteins,

2011               M.Sc. in Molecular Biomedicine, Faculty of Science, University of Copenhagen. Master’s thesis: Placental Malaria and Cervical Cancer, a combined vaccine for African women,

2008               B.Sc. in Molecular Biomedicine, Faculty of Science, University of Copenhagen


Central funding

  1. Co-investigator, Eurostars. Seamless automated end-to-end workflow for high purity extraction of rare cells from body fluids - PureCell (2021)
  2. Project leader, Grand Solutions Innovation Fund Denmark. Early diagnosis of cancer by sensitive detection of circulating tumor cells – prEDICT (2020)
  3. Post-doc grant, Independent Research Fund Denmark. VAR2-based capture of circulating tumor cells to predict cancer therapy outcome and guide personalised treatment (2018)
  4. Co-investigator, Svend Andersen Fonden. Tidlig kræftdiagnose med påvisning af cirkulerende kræftceller i blod ved hjælp af et malariaprotein (2018)
  5. Co-investigator, ERC PoC. Using rVAR2 to capture circulating tumor cells (2017)
  6. PhD grant, Harboefonden. Udvikling af nye metoder til diagnosticering af kræft ved hjælp af malariaproteiner (2012)
  7. Co-investigator, Gates Foundation. Combinatorial vaccine against malaria and HPV (2012)


Supervision of students

Past: Mie Marienhof Staffeldt (Bachelor), Sara Bang-Christensen (Master and PhD), Amalie Mundt Jørgensen (Master), Nanna Skeltved (Bachelor) Andreas Frederiksen (lab technician), Tobias Bertram Pedersen (Bachelor), Rasmus Sund Pedersen (Master), Mille Taagard (Master), Ellen Kakulidis (Bachelor),

On-going: Nicolai Tue Sand (PhD), Caroline Løppke (PhD), Rui Zhang (Lab technician), Sigrid Marie Hammer Mannering (Bachelor)



Conference presentations at Gordon Research seminar (2014), AACR (2018), ISMRC (2018), ACTC (2019) as well as public interviews.



Part-owner of VAR2 Pharmaceuticals and VarCT Diagnostics and co-investigator on multiple patents.

Participant on INSEAD Making Innovation Happen Programme (2020-2021).

ID: 33042256