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The Sakari Alhopuro Foundation promotes and supports medical research, biodiversity, entrepreneurship as well as cultural and social well-being in Finland.

Medical Science

The Foundation specifically supports young doctors, so that they might have the opportunity to conduct research already during their studies and immediately after graduating.  

Grant applicants


More research data is needed about the impacts of climate change on our planet’s future. The Foundation seeks to advance an understanding of the biodiversity of nature as a means of promoting a more sustainable use of our natural surroundings.

Grant applicants

What's new

The application period has ended

The application period for 2023 has now ended.  Grant recipients will  be informed of the decision personally, and the names of the grant recipients are published on the Foundation’s website by the end of May.

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Sakari Alhopuro:


‘What is the purpose of life? As a doctor, I have often considered that the purpose of life is found in helping others’, states Sakari Alhopuro, founder of the Foundation.

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Get to know the work of researchers by reading our blogs!

Environmental changes increase the burden of disease in Kenya’s Taita Hills

Dengue, malaria and yellow fever are among the most common vector-borne contagious diseases, in other words, diseases that are transmitted to humans from infected mosquitoes and other arthropods. Climate change has increased their prevalence, and a total of 80 per cent of the world population live in high disease risk areas – therefore, more research data is needed.

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Do the microbiome and metabolites influence the development of preeclampsia?

Preeclampsia (earlier known as toxaemia) is a pregnancy-related complication, which affects approximately 2–3 percent of pregnant women in Finland. Globally, more than 70,000 mothers and 500,000 babies are annually lost as a result of preeclampsia. Although preeclampsia was identified already before the Common Era, its pathogenetic mechanisms still remain unclear. Our research team is currently investigating possible associations between the human microbiome and metabolites and the pathogenesis of preeclampsia.

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More research evidence is needed on diabetic patients in the primary health care setting

In Finland, approximately 350,000 persons have type 2 diabetes, and another 100,000 individuals have diabetes without knowing it. Diabetes causes human suffering and may result in premature deaths, so it is vital to promote its care and control. Since the majority of patients with type 2 diabetes are being treated at the primary health care level, more research evidence is needed concerning this particular patient group.

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The first ever Sakari Alhopuro Prize awarded to Professor Kalervo Väänänen and archipelago nature photographer Jaakko Ruola

The Sakari Alhopuro Foundation’s Board has selected Professor Kalervo Väänänen and nature photographer Jaakko Ruola as the recipients of the Sakari Alhopuro Prize. The prize is awarded in recognition for their influential contribution to the protection of the Archipelago Sea. Now awarded for the first time, the prize sum amounts to 50,000 euro to be shared by the prize winners.

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Saving the Archipelago Sea calls for legislative actions, the stick and the carrots

The Archipelago Sea is one of the most spectacular natural environs in Finland – but for how long? Eutrophication caused by phosphorus and the resulting algal blooms in the sea pose a serious threat to the natural and recreational values of the unique marine environment and the various forms of livelihood in the archipelago. Immediate, binding and efficient actions are needed to reverse the current development.

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Professor Pentti Huovinen received the A. I. Virtanen Prize

Named after the only Finnish Nobel laureate in science, the A .I. Virtanen Prize has been awarded to Professor Pentti Huovinen in recognition of his internationally significant research in the field of bacteriology.

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Professor Emeritus Pekka Niemelä: “Root causes for the loss of nature derive from the Age of Enlightenment"

According to Pekka Niemelä, Professor (emer.) of Biodiversity and Environmental Science at the University of Turku, the accelerating loss of nature cannot be explained by climate change and related factors alone. He suggests that the root causes for the current state of nature derive from the Age of Enlightenment when humankind attempted to establish dominion over nature – with fateful consequences.

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Contact information

Sakari Alhopuro Foundation

Carita Rantanen, M.Sc. (Econ.), eMBA
Managing Director
phone. 040 503 9609

Board of Directors of the Foundation

Pentti Huovinen, D.Med.Sc.,
Professor of Bacteriology
Chairman of the Board
Jyri Heinonen, LL.M. with court training
Vice Chairman of the Board
Ilppo Vuorinen, Ph.D.,
Professor Emeritus of Environmental Research
Member of the Board
Saara Alhopuro, Master of Political Science, diplomat
Member of the Board

Email addresses are in the form: firstname.lastname(at)

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