Masaryk University Rector's Awards

On the occasion of the academic holiday Dies academicus, Masaryk University awarded several prizes. The Rector's Prize for the best students in doctoral programs was awarded to Dr. Martin Toul. Dr. Barbara Kubíčková received the Rector's Prize for an outstanding dissertation.

24 May 2023 Jitka Vaňáčková

Photo: Martin Indruch

RNDr. Martin Toul, Ph.D.

Dr. Martin Toul received the Rector's Prize for outstanding students of doctoral study programs.

In his Ph.D. thesis, Martin was involved in research in protein engineering and advanced enzyme kinetics. It is a field of research in which only a small number of research groups worldwide are involved. He aimed to unravel the molecular mechanisms of selected enzymes to optimize them for practical applications. The research focused on three groups of enzymes: luciferases, plasminogen activators, and haloalkane dehalogenases. Luciferases are enzymes that produce bioluminescent radiation. Plasminogen activators are thrombolytics, i.e., drugs that dissolve blood clots. Halogenases have applications in detecting and decontaminating toxic substances in the environment.

Martin identified limitations in the function of staphylokinases and showed that their removal could increase the efficiency of blood clot dissolution by up to ten thousand times.


Rector’s Award for the Best Students in Doctoral Programmes: Martin Toul Photo: Martin Indruch

"I greatly appreciate the Rector's Award. Such an award for academic achievements must please everyone. It is also an important confirmation that I was doing something meaningful and of sufficient quality. This award significantly motivates me to further scientific work and research."

Barbara Kubíčková, M.Sc., Ph.D.

Dr. Barbara Kubíčková received the Rector's Prize for an outstanding dissertation.

Barbara Kubíčková was an outstanding student who worked as an Early-Stage Researcher within the prestigious international MSCA (Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions) project on training top students in NaToxAq (Natural Toxins and Drinking Water Quality) supported by the EU H2020 Framework Programme. Barbara's research focused on studying the potentially harmful effects of bioactive substances produced by cyanobacteria and the associated risks to human health. She focused on the metabolites produced by cyanobacteria. She obtained essential information related to their effects on the respiratory system, digestive system, hormonal regulation, early development of the nervous system, and the potential risks associated with exposure to these substances.

Dr. Barbara Kubíčková's research has resulted in many important insights, especially regarding the risk of inhaling cyanotoxins.


Dr. Barbara Kubíčková received the Rector's Prize for an outstanding dissertation. Photo: Barbara Kubíčková

"I am greatly honoured by receiving this award. I am deeply passionate about my work and science and always try to deliver work to my best knowledge and capabilities - not to impress, but to be as accurate as possible. Receiving the MUNI Rector's Award reassures me that going the extra mile is not in vain and will help me continue to do so. Thank you for the nomination, selection, and the award."

Congratulations on these awards, and we wish you many more successes!

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