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27 January 2000

ZONTA Prize 1999 for Ute Karaus (Biology)

Prize for budding women scientists of the University of Heidelberg worth 5,000 marks—Aim of the ZONTA Club: strengthening the legal, political, economic and professional status of women—Prize first awarded in 1996

On 27 January 2000, biology postgrad Ute Karaus (b. 1971) was presented with the 1999 ZONTA Prize for young women scientists of the University of Heidelberg by Rector Prof. Dr. Jürgen Siebke. The prize was awarded in recognition of the outstanding quality of her diploma thesis on "Integrated Sediment Evaluation via in-vitro Biotests and Macro-Zoobenthon Counts", written under the supervision of Dr. Thomas Braunbeck at Heidelberg University's Institute of Zoology. The ZONTA award comes with 5,000 marks in prize money.

Ute Karaus enrolled for biology at the University in 1992. Since 1999 she has been working on a doctoral dissertation at the Faculty of Biology. She also collaborates on a freelance basis with an environmental studies office. Her diploma thesis was part of a project undertaken in close collaboration with other research institutions and entitled "Ecotoxicologically Affected Waters in Baden-Württemberg". It studies and assesses the quality of various bodies of water in Baden-Württemberg, drawing upon a broad range of biological, limnological and chemical test systems for the purpose.

A significant new approach to the problem of contaminated and endangered waters

Ute Karaus' thesis sets out to elaborate a concept for the evaluation of the (eco-)toxocological risk potential at affected locations in the aquatic ecosystems of the state of Baden-Württemberg. In it she also proposes concrete assessment guidelines and suggestions for action in connection with contaminated locations. The guidelines are based on a variety of methods for chemical and biological analysis and the aggregation of data using appropriate statistical methods. The data were collected at different sites in Heidelberg, Eppingen and Eberbach. The jury regarded Ute Karaus' thesis as a significant new approach to the problem of contaminated and endangered aquatic locations.
Heidelberg's ZONTA Club is part of an international association of self-employed and high-ranking professional women whose aim it is to strengthen the legal, political, economic and professional status of women. The ZONTA Prize for budding women scientists working at the University of Heidelberg was set up in 1995 and first awarded in 1996. Ute Karaus is the third young scientist to receive it.

Please address any inquiries to:
Dr. Michael Schwarz
Press Officer of the University of Heidelberg
phone: 06221/542310, fax: 542317
michael.schwarz@rektorat.uni-heidelberg.de


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