Dear ESRS Members,

We are happy to announce that the winner of the Pisa Sleep Award 2018 is Professor Tarja Porkka Heiskanen. Our warmest congratulations for such an accomplishment. We thank you for your contribution to the field of sleep research and for your active involvement in the context of education.

Lino Nobili


Pisa, 15 June 2018


The thirteenth edition of the Pisa Sleep Award has been held the 15th of June in Pisa. The members of the Scientific Board of the Pisa Sleep Award proposed Professor Tarja Porkka Heiskanen for the prize.

From 1998 to 2000 Professor Tarja Porkka Heiskanen has been a member of the Scientific Committee of our scientific society and from 2000 to 2004 she has been the Secretary.

Professor Tarja Porkka Heiskanen gave fundamental contribution in the field of sleep neurophysiology and neurochemistry, in particular, on the role of the basal forebrain and adenosine in sleep regulation. Her studies have been strongly focused on understanding how does the brain measure the duration and intensity of previous wakefulness in order to increase the duration and intensity of subsequent sleep.  During her career, Prof. Porrka Heiskanen has also been very active in promoting and organizing sleep research in Europe. In particular, from 2007 to 2010 she has been a member of the leading group for ESRS Marie Curie training program “Training in sleep and sleep medicine”.

Prof. Porrka Heiskanen is adjunct professor at the Institute of Biomedicine of the University of Helsinki, Finland.

The Pisa Sleep Award is a joint initiative by Professor Piero Salzarulo and Professor Luigi Murri and is a solid tradition in the sleep field, first established in 1994, and sponsored every two years by the School of Medicine of the Pisa University.

The purpose of the Pisa Sleep Award is to acknowledge a European scientist whose career has been devoted to the study of sleep, including its physiology and its disorders, and whose contribution has represented an outstanding advance in sleep medicine.

Previous recipients have been: Michel Jouvet (1994), Elio Lugaresi (1996), Alexander Borbély (1998), David Parkes (2000), Torbjorn Akerstedt (2002), Peretz Lavie (2004), Giulio Tononi (2006), Irene Tobler (2008), Claudio Bassetti (2010), Mario Giovanni Terzano (2012), Pier Luigi Parmeggiani (2014), Pierre Maquet (2016).

Members of the Scientific Board of the Pisa Sleep Award 2018
Luigi Murri, Honorary President
Walter Mc Nicholas, President European Sleep Research Society, Dublin
Raffaele Ferri, President Italian Association of Sleep Medicine, Enna
Roberto Amici, Research Coordinator of the Italian Association of Sleep Medicine, Bologna
Enrica Bonanni, Director of the Sleep Centre, University of Pisa
Mario Petrini, Director of the Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, University of Pisa

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