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Media contacts summer 2011 - Media, University of Gothenburg, Sweden Till startsida
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A to Z of contacts for summer topics - 2011

What is rabbit fever? Why do Swedes enjoy singalongs so much? What is the phenomenon we see in the sky on 12 August? Is sunbathing dangerous? Which types of flowers grow wild in our fields? Is it true that wearing a wet swimsuit can cause cystitis?

There are so many questions relating to summer, and researchers at the University of Gothenburg have answer to these and most other questions.

Press officers at the University of Gothenburg have put together a list of experts in subjects that are topical during the summer. This list is updated intermittently.



Addiction psychology

Research on the psychological mechanisms of addiction, how problems with addiction arise and develop and how this relates to behaviour and health in the broader sense - Claudia Fahlke is researching early discovery, mapping, diagnosis and psycho-social and psycho-therapeutical interventions for drug-and alcohol misuse.

Claudia Fahlke, professor in psychology, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 4289, +46 (0)708–611620, email:

Alcoholism and public health

Drinking patterns change during the summer months. So is this a threat to public health? Fredrik Spak knows the answer to this and many other questions regarding alcohol-consumption and public health.

Fredrik Spak, university lecturer in social medicine, the Sahlgrenska Academy, telephone: +46 (0)706–501 197, email:

Animal behaviour

Kristina ”Snuttan” Sundell is a popular animal expert, who specialises in animal behaviour and regularly appears in factual nature programmes on the radio and television.

Kristina “Snuttan” Sundell, professor in zoological physiology, Department for Zoology, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 3671, email:


Aquaculture is the term used to describe farming of for example fish, mussles and oysters. Thrandur Björnsson (fish) och Susanne Lindegarth (mussles and oysters) are both associated with the newly formed Aquaculture Centre West.

Thrandur Björnsson, professor, Department of Zoology, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 3691, email:

Susanne Lindegardt, researcher, Department of Marine Ecology, telephone: +46 (0)526–686 78, +46 (0)761–145 757, email:


The summer sky is mostly so light that it can be difficult to spot stars, planets and other phenomena in the sky. However, when the Earth crosses the course of the Swift-Tuttle comet in August each year we end up in the midst of a meteor shower known as the Perseids, which is at its most active around 12 August. Maria Sundin can explain what occurs in the summer sky.

Maria Sundin, university lecturer, Department of Physics, telephone: +46 (0)31–772 31 38, +46 (0)702–52 40 50, email:


Boat paint

The way in which you painted your boat in the spring influences the state of the hull and affects the speed at which the boat moves through the water. How toxic can boat paint be before it harms our coastal environment? Hans Blank has the answer to this and many other queries.

Hans Blanck, professor in eco-toxology, Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 2609, email:


Cardiac arrest and drowning

Contact Andreas Claesson, who is a doctoral student in medicine at the Sahlgrenska Academy, as well as an ambulance nurse, telephone: +46 (0)704–940 546

Cardiac arrest and exercise

Is it dangerous to exercise when it is hot outside?

Johan Herlitz, professor in prehospital emergency medicine, the Sahlgrenska Academy, telephone: +46 (0)31–342 7548, +46 (0)733–39 60 59, email:

Caries and sugar-consumption

Food and drinking habits are often a bit different during holidays. But how are our teeth affected by continuous snacking and drinking during our time off? Dowen Birkhed knows.

Dowen Birkhed,
professor in cariology at the Sahlgrenska Academy, mobil: +46 (0)708–28 58 56, email:

Children and young people who start fires, formation of gangs

The research project ”Barn/ungdomar som anlägger brand – orsaker och motåtgärder” (”Children and young people who start fires – causes and preventions”) examines reasons why young people start fires. Sven-Åke Lindgren has researched gang-related issues and the causes of social problems. He can also answer general criminological queries relating to crimes, criminal politics and crime prevention.

Sven-Åke Lindgren, professor in sociology, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 47 83, email:

Cholera-like symptoms, swimming

In some cases, a cholera-like infection can be caused by water-borne bacteria which enter through wounds and then further on in the body. It is a rare disease and mostly affects people with weak immune-systems, but it can be very serious and lead to blood poisoning. Lars Hagberg knows more about this and other infectious diseases.

Lars Hagberg, professor in infectious diseases, the Sahlgrenska Academy, telephone: +46 (0)709–639 616, email:

Church and summer

Church weddings, road churches, summer churches, end-of-school-term ceremonies, outdoor worship… Viktor Adrin is an expert on the history of Christianity and can answer queries relating to this area.

Viktor Aldrin, doctor of theology, Department of Literature, History of Ideas and Religion/Department of Education and Special Education, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 5558, 070–656 0358, email:
Victor's personal website

Climate issues

Greenhouse gases, bio fuel, the ozone layer, use of land, forests and forestry… there are many questions around climate change. Leif Klemedtsson and Åsa Kasimir Klemedtsson know how it works.

Leif Klemedtsson, professor, Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, telephone: +46 (0)702–74 98 24, +46 (0)31–786 26 32, email:

Åsa Kasimir Klemedtsson, researcher, Department of Earth Sciences, telephone: +46 (0)704–91 13 61, email:


Older buildings and historical environments form part of our cultural heritage. At the Department of Conservation you’ll find experts in this field, as well as the Crafts Laboratory, which is a national centre for cultural-environment crafts.

Peter Sjömar, university lecturer, Department of Conservation, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 93 60, email:

Customs and traditions in Sweden during the summer

Mats Nilsson can answer queries regarding Swedish summer traditions, for example which traditions are new and which are older, which are Swedish and which stem from other cultures. He knows why we dance around the maypole at midsummer. And how about holidays and spare time – is this part of modern Sweden, or did these exist before?

Mats Nilsson, docent in ethnology, Department of Cultural Sciences, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 1966, email:


Diet and nutrition - eating habits during the holidays

Crisps with your beer or cola is nice, but too much salt can be harmful for your body. Lena Lena Hulthén, professor in clinical nutrition can answer questions about this. She can also give tips on which foods are particularly beneficial during the summer and which are also environmentally friendly. Examples of these kinds of food include locally produced strawberries, which are rich in iron and vitamin-C, and fish and seafood which are contain essential fatty oils and vitamin-D.

Lena Hulthén, professor in clinical nutrition, the Sahlgrenska Academy, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 3714, +46 (0)708–57 49 91, email:

Disabilities and summertime

Summer, sun and heat mean that many people head out into nature, into the cities and to the beaches. Most people take it as a given that they are able to get around in different landscapes and environments. But for those with physical handicaps there can be many obstacles to doing this, and accessibility issues can become even more highlighted during the summer.

Jörgen Lundälv, docent in sociology, telephone: +46 (0)76–172 47 11, email:

Jörgen's personal blog
Jörgen's web page

Diving accidents

There is a pressure chamber at the Sahlgrenska University Hospital/Östra Hospital in Gothenburg. Contact the switchboard on +46 (0)31–343 40 00.



After the outbreak of ehec in Germany in the spring 2011 most people are familiar with what the enterohemorragisk escherichia coli bacteria can cause. Ehec-outbreaks have sometimes occurred in conjunction with swimming in lakes near fields where farm-animals graze. Lars Hagberg knows more about this bacteria.

Lars Hagberg, professor in infectious diseases, the Sahlgrenska Academy, telephone: +46 (0)709–639 616, email:

Emergency healthcare

Summer often involves activities and trips, which sometimes unfortunately lead to injuries. Johan Kärrholm can answer questions about motoric following accidents.

Johan Kärrholm, professor in orthopedics, the Sahlgrenska Academy, telephone +46 (0)31–342 82 47, +46 (0)731–58 78 09, email:



Bente Eriksen knows all about summer flowers. She can answer your queries about the species and spread of the Swedish flora. She is also behind the school project ”Vilken växt?” (”Which plant”), a competition for pupils in year 5.

Bente Eriksen, university lecturer, Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 2684, email:

Flowers – wild field flowers

Which flowers are growing in the fields in different parts of the country? Bente Eriksen is a lecturer in floristics – the identification of different types of plants. This also includes the study of how different species of plants are spread depending on the climate and other environmental factors.

Bente Eriksen, university lecturer, Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 2684, e -post:

Football language

Gunnar Bergh, in conjunction with Sölve Ohlander, professor emeritus in English, is creating a Swedish-English and English-Swedish football dictionary. Certain words, such as “forward” and “offside” have been borrowed into Swedish straight from English, whereas other expressions such as “hairdryer treatment” and “to head for and early bath” have not found their way into Swedish at all. How does the language of football emerge? Gunnar Bergh is happy to answer queries relating to this – perhaps some will come up during the Gothia Cup youth tournament in July, when football and different languages come together on the football pitches of Gothenburg?

Gunnar Bergh, professor in English language, Department for Languages and Literatures, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 1788, +46 (0)708-65 05 74, email:

Watch a video interview with Sölve Ohlander and Gunnar Bergh
(in Swedish)


Heat - how to handle it?

How are humans affected by a heat wave? Some interesting physiological questions to consider when temperatures are rising include fluid balance, circulation and temperature adjustment. Ove Lundgren is an expert in this field and also knows about physiology in general.

Ove Lundgren, professor emeritus in physiology, the Sahlgrenska Academy, telephone: +46 (0)708–18 75 11, email:


Insects - bites and stings from wasps, bees, mosquitoes and other insects

An insect bite or sting is not usually dangerous, but around one per cent of the population is allergic to insect stings or bites and can develop problems breathing or become unconscious after a sting. Jan Lötvall can answer queries to questions about all types of allergy, including allergic reactions to insect bites and stings.

Jan Lötvall
, professor in clinical allergology, the Sahlgrenska Academy, telephone: +46 (0)706–88 20 05, email:



Do you have a question about the common moon jellyfish, Lion´s mane jellyfish, cyanea lamarckii, the newcomer Mnemiopsis leidyi (also known as sea walnut, or American comb jellyfish) or other jellylike inabitants of the sea? Lene Friis Möller is the expert to contact.

Lene Friis Möller, researcher, Department of Marine Ecology, telephone: +46 (0)523–185 09, +46 (0)730–83 26 72, email:


Literature – horror and crime fiction

During the holidays there’s often a bit more time to read books that otherwise get overlooked. Yvonne Leffler can inform about horror- and crime fiction, both Swedish and international and literature as well as film.

Yvonne Leffler, professor in literature, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 52 94, email:


Menstruation and swimming

Is it ok to swim while you are having your period? Or is it better to wait? Ian Milsom is the person to ask.

Ian Milsom, professor in gynecology, the Sahlgrenska Academy, telephone: +46 (0)705–37 16 02, email:


Nano particles

Nowadays you find nano particles in everything, from your boat and car products to your bathroom at home or your keyboard at work. But what are they and what risks to they involve? Klavs Hansen coordinates research about nano particles at the University of Gothenburg. Elisabet Ahlberg is a chemist. If they can’t answer your query themselves they will be able to point you in the direction of the right researcher.

Klavs Hansen, university lecturer, Department of Physics, email:

Elisabet Ahlberg, professor, Department of Chemistry, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 9002, email:



Giant pacific oysters are an alien species that has invade the Swedish coastline over the last few years. It threatens local species, like the blue mussel, and with their sharp shells they make an unpleasant addition to the beaches. Åsa Strand knows more about these intruders.
Åsa Strand, researcher, Department of Marine Ecology, telephone: +46 (0)702–12 03 86, email:



Kai Knudsen is an expert in clinical toxicology. He knows which drugs and narcotics are accessible through online shopping and the risks of using these. He can also answer questions about acute poisoning caused for example by alcohol, jellyfish, snake bites and carbon monoxide.

Kai Knudsen, docent i anaesthesiology and intensive care, the Sahlgrenska Academy, telephone: +46 (0)705–386 600, telephone:


Åslög Dahl is a researcher and is also managing the Pollen Laboratory at the University of Gothenburg, which has measured levels of airborne pollen since 1975. The laboratory provides forecasts to the public, media and the healthcare sector.

Åslög Dahl
, researcher, Department for Plant and Environmental Sciences telephone: +46 (0)31–786 2664, +46 (0)707–55 69 62, email:

Pre-historic rock art

During the summer months, previously unknown pre-historic rock paintings are often discovered. When they are, questions about what they depict, what they mean and what we can learn from them often arise. Ulf Bertilsson, researcher and manager of the Swedish Rock Art Research Archives, is happy to answer queries related to this.

Ulf Bertilsson, researcher, Department of Historical Studies, telephone: +46 (0)525–295 55, +46 (0)709–81 78 81, email:

Swedish Rock Art Research Archives website


Rabbit fever

Rabbit fever is a disease caused by the francisella tularensis bacteria, which is transmitted from animals to humans. Humans can get infected for example through mosquitoes, touching an infected animal or inhaling particles which have been in contact with an infected animal. Lars Hagberg knows more about rabbit fever and its treatment methods.

Lars Hagberg, professor in infectious diseases, the Sahlgrenska Academy, telephone: +46 (0)709–639 616, email:


Safe sex and relationships - young people

Studies have revealed that young people are on average around 16 years of age and sober when they first have sex – with someone they already know. But condoms are only used during around half of the total number of intercourses with new or short-term partners.

Ronny Tikkanen, sociologist at the University of Gothenburg, is an expert on young people and sexual risk-behaviour and led Sweden’s largest survey about attitudes to and awareness of sex amongst young Swedes. It is easiest to reach him via email during the summer:

Sea trout and other fish in the salmon family

A project which aims to map out the movements of sea trout after it migrates from its initial habitat along the coast was initiated in spring 2011. The public is encouraged to help the researchers by submitting samples from the fins of any sea trout they catch while out fishing this summer. Johan Höjesjö leads on this project together with Jörgen Johnsson, who is also an expert on all types of salmon fish.

Johan Höjesjö, university lecturer, Department of Zoology, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 3636, email:

Jörgen Johnsson, professor, Department of Zoology, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 3665, email:

Sexually transmitted diseases and contraception

Summer, sun and sex. This can be a great combination, but without the appropriate contraception it can lead to sexually transmitted diseases and unintended pregnancies. Ian Milsom, professor in gynecology, can provide information about existing forms of contraception and about research into new types. He can also provide expertise about how common different sexually transmitted diseases are.

Ian Milsom, professor in gynecology at the Sahlgrenska Academy, telephone: +46 (0)705–37 16 02, email:

Office of the prevention of infectious diseases
in the Västra Götaland region, telephone: +46 (0)31–368 5600 (staffed during office hours)

Doctor on duty for treatment of infectious diseases - contact the Sahlgrenska University Hospital switchboard, telephone: +46 (0)31–342 1000


Singing in a group means a lot to many people. People in Sweden gather each week for the recording of singalong TV-shows such as Allsång på Skansen (SVT) and Lotta på Liseberg (TV4). Alf Björnberg will be happy to answer queries about why the Swedes are so keen on singalongs. He also knows a lot about other types of ”summer music”.

Alf Björnberg
, professor in music theory, telephone: +46 (0)703–28 79 11, email:

Skin and the sun

For years we have heard that we should sunbathe cautiously and use sunscreen or clothing for protection to avoid skin cancer. But sunrays are not just negative; they are also needed in order for us to produce the essential vitamin-D. Olle Larkö knows about all things – positive and negative - related to sun and skin.

Olle Larkö, professor in dermatology, the Sahlgrenska Academy, telephone: +46 (0)706–321 230, email:


Sleeping patterns change when we have time off – and what happens when we go back to work? Jan Hedner knows all about sleep and sleeping problems.

Jan Hedner, adjunct professor in sleep physiology and breathing problems, the Sahlgrenska Academy, telephone: +46 (0)31–342 7199, +46 (0)735–00 20 77, email:


The pace of living can be high throughout the year, and the expectations for the summer holidays can be high. But sometimes if expectations are too high ahead of and during time off this can lead to stress. Gunnar Ahlborg is on hand to answer any stress-related queries.

Gunnar Ahlborg, docent in medicine, the Sahlgrenska Academy, telephone: +46 (0)31–342 0710, email:

Sunscreen and other skincare products

One in five Swedes suffers from some type of contact allergy. For this reason it is important to minimise the use of allergens in sunscreen and other skincare products. Ann-Therese Karlberg and Anna Börje are chemists who focus on skin and skin disease – dermatology.

Anna Börje, researcher, Department of Chemistry, telephone +46 (0)31–786 9012, email:

Ann-Therese Karlberg
, professor in dermatochemistry and skin allergy, Department of Chemistry, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 9109, email:

Sunlight and the eyes

Sunlight is strong – it almost hurts to look at a white wall. Is strong sunlight dangerous for the yes, and should we therefore protect our eyes against sunlight? Bertil Lindblom knows all about eyes and sunlight.

Bertil Lindblom, professor in eye diseases, the Sahlgrenska Academy, telephone: +46 (0)739–01 10 08, email:


Ticks, diseases

In most cases, bites from ticks are harmless, even though they are unpleasant. Sometimes, however, they can cause encephalitis or Lyme disease. Lars Hagberg knows more about these diseases.

Lars Hagberg, professor in infectious diseases, the Sahlgrenska Academy, telephone: +46 (0)709–639 616, email:

Traffic research, traffic accidents and invalidity

There's a lot of traffic on the roads during the summer holidays, and unfortunately traffic accidents do occur. A traffic accident is traumatic not only for those directly involved but also for their family and relatives. Jörgen Lundälv is researching how traffic accidents affect family and others close to the victims and which support is offered by society when accidents occur.

Jörgen Lundälv, docent in sociology, telephone: +46 (0)76–172 47 11, email:

Jörgen's personal blog

Jörgen's web page


Waves in Sweden during summers are not usually very high, but Leif Djurfeldt researches oceanografy and is an expert on tsunamis. Leif lives with his family just north of Concepción in Chile during half of the year and they were there when it was hit by a tsunami in February 2010. He will be in Chile from 18 August 2011.

Leif Djurfeldt,
docent in oceanography, Department for Earth Sciencesr, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 2860, +46 (0)733–12 43 53, email:


Urban climate

A hot summer in the city? Sofia Thorsson is researching urban climate, for example how climate change affects our cities.

Sofia Thorsson, docent in physical geography, Department of Earth Sciences, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 47 33, email:

Urinary tract infections and cystitis

Is it true that wearing a cold, wet swimsuit can lead to urinary tract infections? Or is the infection caused in some other way? Ian Milsom has the answers to these questions.

Ian Milsom, professor in gynecology vid Sahlgrenska akademin, telephone: +46 (0)705–37 16 02, email:


Virus-related infectious diseases

Thomas Bergström is happy to answer questions relating to viruses, for example HIV, viral diarrhea such as the winter vomiting bug (which, despite its name, is also present during the summer), bird flu and pandemics.

Tomas Bergström
, professor in clinical microbiology, the Sahlgrenska Academy, telephone: +46 (0)705–26 43 69, email:

Volcanoes and earthquakes

Last year we discovered that volcanic eruptions can disrupt air traffic. We already knew that earthquakes can destroy tourist attractions and sites. Erik Sturkell is a geophysician specialising in volcanoes as well as earthquakes. He was on location in Iceland when Eyafjallajökull erupted in spring 2010. Lennart Björklund is a geologist specialising in plate tectonics and its effects, such as earthquakes and the formation of mountains and oceans.

Erik Sturkell
, university lecturer, Department of Earth Sciences, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 28 20, email:

Lennart Björklund,
university lecturer, Department of Earth Sciences, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 28 03, email:



Climate, temperature, flooding, bad weather… of course we discuss the weather during the summer in Sweden. Hans Linderholm and Björn Holmer know all about the current climeate and phenomena as well as variations in climate over time.

Hans Linderholm, professor in physical geography, Department of Earth Sciences, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 2887, +46 (0)705–748 483, email:

Björn Holmer, researcher, Department of Earth Sciences, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 1955, email:

Weather – how does it affect us?

How does the weather affect how we feel, how we experience places and how we use a particular place depending on what the weather is like? Sofia Thorson knows.

Sofia Thorsson, docent in physical geography, Department of Earth Sciences, telephone: +46 (0)31–786 47 33, email:

Worms, mosquitoes and wasps

Sweden is full of creepy crawlies like worms, mosquitoes and wasps during the summer. Find out more about these, as well as invading species and biological diversity, from Christer Erséus at the Department from Zoology.

Christer Erséus, professor in systematics and biodiversity, Department of Zoology, telephone: +46 (0)322–631 065 (private contact number during the summer), +46 (0)31–786 3645, +46 (0)703–57 67 13, email:


There are photographs of some of the researchers in the University of Gothenburg’s image archive. These are free to use, but please don’t forget to quote the image source as: IMAGE: University of Gothenburg.

Visit the image archive 

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Page Manager: Ulrika Lundin|Last update: 7/20/2011

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