Dr. Jonas Ludvigsson, a renowned celiac disease researcher from the Karolinskia Institute in Stockholm, Sweden, has spent the last few months on a Fulbright Scholarship at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN. The prestigious scholarship offered a chance for researchers from two very different clinical cultures to work one-on-one and share their expertise.
“The Mayo Clinic, and especially my supervisor Dr. Joe Murray, has been very supportive of my research. Coming here as a Fulbright Scholar is fantastic,” Dr. Ludvigsson said. "It has also allowed me to team up with other researchers at Mayo, both in celiac disease and in related areas."
Sweden is more advanced in celiac disease awareness, boasting a higher diagnostic rate than that of the U.S. Much of that is due to Sweden’s national patient database, which makes it easier to conduct large scale research on conditions like celiac disease. While the U.S. does not have a nationwide database, Dr. Ludvigsson has relied on databases that the Mayo Clinic has developed in its local area. “The Mayo Clinic’s databases offer great opportunities to characterize celiac disease patients, and Olmsted County allows for population-based research in this part of the U.S.,” he said.
“Finally, it is great to have a chance to experience America," he added. “I really hope that the Minnesota Twins beat the Boston Red Sox in the game next week!”
Dr. Ludvigsson is one of very few Fulbright scholars to focus on celiac disease, and the only one this year researching the autoimmune disease.
To read more about Dr. Ludvigsson’s experience at the Mayo Clinic, read NFCA’s Q&A with the Fulbright Scholar.