This year’s Novartis Scientific Awards, too, go to outstanding Slovenian scientists

  • For quite some  years now, Novartis has been awarding outstanding research and development  achievements by scientists of the Novartis and Sandoz Development Centers.
  • Researchers of the  Novartis development centres in Slovenia received three awards, among them the prestigious  Novartis Distinguished Scientist Award. 
  • The awards  received prove the important role of our scientists within the Novartis and  Sandoz research and development activity, thus affirming them within the Slovene  and global scientific spheres.
24. 8. 2021

The Novartis scientific awards pay tribute to those individuals or teams who have demonstrated special commitment and achievements within their work, thus contributing importantly to the R&D activity of the company. Among the recipients of this year’s Novartis Distinguished Scientist Award is Igor Legen, PhD, head of Clinical Development within the Development Center Slovenia. Other recipients were Marija Bošković Ribarski, PhD, leading researcher within Clinical Development and Dušan Teslić, PhD, head of Particle engineering and Synthesis, both from the Development Center Slovenia.

Igor Legen, PhD received the Novartis award for his important role in development, innovation and implementation of biopharmaceutical approaches, which has led to a substantial improvement of the results of bioequivalence studies within Sandoz Development. Besides, he contributed importantly to the development of an innovative dissolution device (i. e. representing stomach and intestines), which can simulate the peristaltic of the human digestive apparatus thus providing for exceptional progress in biopharmaceutics and the development of generics in Sandoz. “I am very honoured to have received such a high award for scientific achievements, which indicates that we are developing highly innovative approaches being acknowledged within the entire Novartis group. Such achievement is only possible, if one is surrounded by an excellent team constantly searching for new approaches and upgrading the old ones. I’m also accepting this award as motivation for future innovations in the field of generics development, leading to more efficiency in development and enhancing access of our medicines to the patients.”

The leading clinical development researcher within the Development Center Slovenia, Marija Bošković Ribarski, PhD has received the award for her commitment to research in the field of clinical science. She is an expert in strategy development for complex and non-standard clinical programmes, she prepared more ten 160 clinical strategies for successfully marketed medicines as well as medicines still in development. “It is a great honour for me to receive this award, which emphasises the fact that our scientific achievements are acknowledged at the highest level of Novartis. Also, my achievements are reflecting the excellent teamwork on Clinical Development within the Development Center Slovenia, therefore my award bears acknowledgement of the entire team. To me the award means great motivation for future commitment at work as well as for the upgrade and exchange of knowhow. Thereby we are all motivated to strive for innovative solutions and new research achievements contributing to the growth strategy of our company.”

The third award receiver is Dušan Teslić, PhD head of Particle engineering and  Synthesis in early development of pharmaceutical products from the Development  Center Slovenia. As researcher in the field of planning particles of active  pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs), he has developed numerous procedures for  active pharmaceutical ingredients with target-oriented physical and chemical  properties. “I am glad to be working in a research environment offering  opportunities for achievements to be proud of and that are recognized and  awarded by the company. I received the award for my work in the field of  planning chemical and physical properties of APIs particles. Managing those is  often of key importance for the successful development and production of  medicines. For me, the award represents great additional motivation for the  growth of my expertise and further cocreation of a research climate that will  continue offering our outstanding researchers the challenges and opportunities  for extraordinary achievements in development.”

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Novartis is the leading provider of medicines in Slovenia, where Lek d.d., Novartis Pharma Services Inc., Podružnica v Sloveniji and Sandoz d.d., operate. Together we are building and maintaining the reputation of a dynamic, ethical, and trusted pharmaceutical company. Lek develops, manufactures, and markets effective, safe, and high quality medicines and active pharmaceutical ingredients. With our knowledge, quality, and experience we have gained an important role in Novartis' organizational structure, especially in the Novartis Technical Operations, Global Drug Development, Novartis Business Services, and the generic division Sandoz. We are the leading Sandoz development center, and one of the key development sites for technologically complex projects. We invest a great deal in the development, education, and training of our employees. Over the last nine years, the company has created more than 3,350 new job opportunities, making us one of the biggest employers in Slovenia. Novartis invested in Slovenia more than EUR 2.7 billion since 2003.

About Sandoz
Sandoz, a Novartis division, is a global leader in generic pharmaceuticals and biosimilars. Our purpose is to pioneer access for patients by developing and commercializing novel, affordable approaches that address unmet medical needs. Our ambition is to be the world’s leading and most valued generics company. Our broad portfolio of high-quality medicines, covering all major therapeutic areas, accounted for 2020 sales of USD 9.6 billion.

About Novartis
Novartis is reimagining medicine to improve and extend people’s lives. As a leading global medicines company, we use innovative science and digital technologies to create transformative treatments in areas of great medical need. In our quest to find new medicines, we consistently rank among the world’s top companies investing in research and development. Novartis products reach nearly 800 million people globally and we are finding innovative ways to expand access to our latest treatments. About 109,000 people of more than 140 nationalities work at Novartis around the world. Find out more at

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This press release contains statements and conclusions based on projections of Lek’s future business operations. These estimates are derived from the best information currently available. In case these forecasts prove unreliable, the actual results could prove different from those projected.

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For additional information contact:
Gregor Makuc
Communications & External Engagement
Lek Pharmaceuticals d.d.
Phone: +386 1 580 22 43